Another week, another strong ratings performance from the NFL. Ho hum.
The league’s Week 7 ratings were strong nearly across the board, starting with CBS. The doubleheader, powered by a crossflex and a flex out of Sunday Night Football in the late window, drew an overall rating of 12.0, which was up 14% overall from 2017. The early window drew a 9.5 and the late window drew a 14.4, up 12% and 14% overall.
— CBS Sports PR (@CBSSportsGang) October 22, 2018
The early window was highlighted by Patriots-Bears, and the late window was featured a pair of flexed games, featuring the Cowboys-Redskins crossflex and the Rams-49ers Sunday Night Football flex. For one, I am completely shocked that close games (in the forms of New England-Chicago and Dallas-Washington) sucked viewers in and kept them watching the games.
Overall, the four windows drew a 45.3 gross overnight (which is a metric that’s been gaining in popularity this season, much to my dismay), up 4% from last year. Fox was also up for its single window of games, featuring a tight Panthers-Eagles matchup in most of the country (though overall numbers aren’t available yet).
For traditional four Sunday windows in Week 7, NFL had a 45.3 gross overnight rating, up 4% from last year. Only NBC down in Week 7 with blowout on "SNF." CBS also gets another 4.4 ratings points for Titans-Chargers in Sunday morning window from London (not included in 45.3)
— Austin Karp (@AustinKarp) October 22, 2018
NBC’s Sunday Night Football window was also down for the Chiefs’ 35 point blowout win over the Bengals, a game that was highlighted by Al Michaels frantically trying to do some quick math on the over/under at the end of the game. The overnight peaked at a 12.6 before halftime, which isn’t a good sign given that Week 7 of SNF in 2017 drew a final rating of 11.0.
The overnight for Bengals-Chiefs on NBC’s SNF peaked at 12.6/21 as Kansas City took 24-7 lead late in 2nd quarter (9:30-9:45pm ET)
— NBC Sports PR (@NBCSportsPR) October 22, 2018
On the other end of the spectrum, Thursday Night Football drew a horrendous, record-low primetime overnight for Fox this week, but still topped the ALCS and the NBA’s Opening Week games on Turner’s networks.