Viewership for Week 10 of the 2020 NFL sason is in, and while a poor slate of games drew plenty of declines, one competition-free window drew a massive number.
The early half of Fox’s doubleheader (with half the country getting Bucs-Panthers) drew 18.241 million viewers, per ShowBuzz Daily. That’s an increase of 73% from last season’s early doubleheader window, which drew 10.53 million for Falcons-Saints on Fox. The network is saying that this is their most-watched regional window since the 2009 (!) season.
The late half of the doubleheader, with the country getting one of Seahawks-Rams, Bengals-Steelers, or Saints-49ers, drew 20.087 million viewers. That’s down 13% from a year ago, when the late half of the doubleheader (Panthers-Packers to most of the country) drew 23.20 million viewers.
With the Masters drawing record-low viewership as a lead-in, the one CBS window of the week failed to deliver good numbers. Two-third of the country got Bills-Cardinals in the late afternoon, and the window averaged 10.344 million viewers. That’s down 30% from a year ago, where a window highlighted by Chiefs-Titans drew 14.84 million viewers.
Sunday Night Football also laid an egg for NBC. The Patriots’ upset win over the Ravens (which I’m still not processing) drew 15.787 million viewers, down 31% from Vikings-Cowboys last year (22.99 million viewers).
On Thursday night, Colts-Titans drew 12.161 million viewers, a 10% decline from Chargers-Raiders a year ago.
We close with Monday Night Football ESPN’s broadcast of Vikings-Bears drew 11.450 million viewers, down 28% from 2019’s Seahawks-49ers tilt (15.98 million).
Looking ahead to Week 11, we’ve got quite a good Cardinals-Seahawks matchup on Thursday night, which will be compared to Steelers-Browns from a year ago. The Sunday night game of Chiefs-Raiders is quite a good one as well, and will be compared to Rams-Bears last season. On Monday night, we’ve got Rams-Bucs, compared to Chiefs-Chargers from last year. As for the Sunday day games, Fox again has the doubleheader, with a weak schedule early (Eagles-Browns, Falcons-Saints) and both Packers-Colts and Cowboys-Vikings late. CBS has the singleheader, highlighted by Titans-Ravens and Patriots-Texans.
[Data via ShowBuzz Daily, Sports Media Watch]