An NFL clash aired over the weekend delivered the biggest audience so far this season for its network. Media Life reports that CBS’s coverage of the New England Patriots’ nailbiting 27-26 win over the New York Giants, which stretched into the first hour of prime time Sunday night, delivered CBS’s best numbers of the season for an NFL game, based on Nielsen overnights.
“The second half of the doubleheader on CBS averaged an 18.3 household rating, according to Nielsen metered-market ratings, up 5 percent from last year and CBS’s best of the year,” Media Life reports. “It peaked with a 22.9 from 7:30 to 8 p.m., as the Patriots scored a winning field goal with just a second remaining in the game.”
With the game’s overrun pumping up CBS’s 7-8 p.m. hour, the network dominated the first hour of prime time. Preliminary figures show CBS drawing an average of 29.55 million viewers for the hour, along with an 8.5 average rating in the key 18-49 demo — the highest-rated hour of the night on the broadcast nets — and a 10.0 average in 25-54.
NBC, however, won the night, as its “Sunday Night Football” rose 14% from a year ago in metered markets to a 12.6 household rating. The network had a preliminary 5.4 average rating in 18-49 for prime time, to a 3.5 for CBS, a 1.4 for ABC and a 1.2 for Fox.
CBS’s “60 Minutes,” airing from 8-9 p.m., was the top non-sports program of the night in 18-49 with a 3.2 average.