NFL ratings being up this year has been a theme for these Monday ratings posts, and Week 4 certainly continued that trend.
NBC’s Sunday Night Football broadcast, for example, posted its best Week 4 rating since 2012, with a 15.5 overnight:
Cowboys-Saints thriller won by New Orleans 12-10, delivers for NBC pic.twitter.com/WJSMiyedqH
— NBC Sports PR (@NBCSportsPR) September 30, 2019
Last week’s Sunday Night Football rating was also strong, especially considering it was going up against the Emmy Awards. CBS had the doubleheader this week, and their afternoon national window delivered as well.
Via CBS Sports:
CBS Sports’ NFL national game on Sunday, Sept. 29 scored in the ratings with 13.0/26 average household rating/share in the metered markets, a +6% increase versus its comparable national game window last year (12.3/24; Week 4 – 9/30/18). The national game was highlighted by the Minnesota-Chicago game.
Through the first quarter of the NFL season, THE NFL ON CBS’ season-to-date rating is its highest in three years, up +5%, averaging an 11.0/23 household rating/share in the metered markets (2016; 11.3/23).
Yesterday’s regional game coverage window earned a 9.3/21 average HH rating/share, up +1% from last year’s 9.2/20.
Fox, meanwhile, had been riding an impressive streak of year-over-year improvement in every broadcast window, which was bound to be broken at some point. This week was that week, according to Paulsen at Sports Media Watch:
The exception to the run of multi-year highs was FOX, which posted its first decline of the season. The network averaged a 10.8 for singleheader coverage featuring Chiefs-Lions or Buccaneers-Rams in most markets — the lowest in Week 4 since 2016 on CBS (10.6).
Overnights fell 8% from last year (11.7) and 14% from 2017 (12.6), with the caveat that those windows featured the Cowboys — against the Lions last year and against the Rams two years ago.
Still, through the first month of the season, it’s tough to argue that the numbers have been anything but positive from the league and network perspective.
NFL season-to-date averages in overnight ratings through last night. Pretty good first month:
FOX Thursdays: +18%
ESPN MNF: +6%
NBC SNF: +4%
FOX Sundays: +4%
CBS Sundays: +3%
— Michael Mulvihill (@mulvihill79) September 30, 2019
Of course, tonight’s Monday Night Football contest features the winless Bengals at the winless Steelers, so that particular number might fall back a bit, but it’s still an impressive start overall.