Bulls & Bears: Early NFL playoff ratings spike bodes well for weekend games

Sports

Bulls of the Week

The NFL and its broadcast partners kicked off the 2019 Super Bowl tournament with one of the best-rated wild-card weekends in the past quarter-century. The average U.S. TV audience for the four wild-card games was an impressive 28.35 million.

Those bullish TV numbers bode well for Super Bowl LIII. The math typically shows that the bigger the wild-card audiences at the start of the post-season, the higher the count come the NFL championship game on the first Sunday in February.

It began with ESPN’s one kick at the playoff can, an Indianapolis Colts’ win on the road against the Houston Texans that scored a Nielsen rating of 13.5 (up four per cent over the same game last year) and an American audience of 22.77 million. The television numbers rose proportionately to the drama that the Dallas Cowboys and Seattle Seahawks provided for FOX on Saturday night. The 15.9 rating was up a whopping 24 per cent over last year’s comparable game.

The TV sweepstakes continued Sunday when the Los Angeles Chargers eliminated the hometown Baltimore Ravens before an average U.S. audience of 29.38 million on CBS, with the rating of 15.4 up a couple of points over last year.

Yet NBC saved the best for last, a stunning road win for Nick Foles and the defending champion Philadelphia Eagles over the Chicago Bears at Soldier Field. The closely contested game — one that went down to the last tick on the clock and what would have been a game-winning field goal that bounced off both the left upright and the crossbar — delivered a scorching rating of 19.7, with an average national audience of 35.89 million and total audience delivery averages of 36.4 million when live streaming is included.

The strong TV run should continue this weekend given the attractive line up of divisional matchups.

Philadelphia Eagles players celebrates after Chicago Bears kicker Cody Parkey misses a field goal during the second half of an NFL wild-card playoff football game Sunday, Jan. 6, 2019, in Chicago. The Eagles won 16-15. (AP Photo/David Banks) ORG XMIT: CXB1

” data-medium-file=”https://postmediavancouversun2.files.wordpress.com/2019/01/APTOPIX-Eagles-Bears-Football.jpg?w=300″ data-large-file=”https://postmediavancouversun2.files.wordpress.com/2019/01/APTOPIX-Eagles-Bears-Football.jpg?w=640&h=427″ src=”https://postmediavancouversun2.files.wordpress.com/2019/01/APTOPIX-Eagles-Bears-Football.jpg?w=640&h=427″ alt=”Philadelphia Eagles players celebrate after Chicago Bears kicker Cody Parkey misses a field goal in the final minute of their NFL wild-card playoff game at Soldier Field in Chicago on Sunday. The Eagles won 16-15. (Photo: David Banks, Associated Press)” width=”640″ height=”427″ srcset=”https://postmediavancouversun2.files.wordpress.com/2019/01/APTOPIX-Eagles-Bears-Football.jpg?w=640&h=427 640w, https://postmediavancouversun2.files.wordpress.com/2019/01/APTOPIX-Eagles-Bears-Football.jpg?w=150&h=100 150w, https://postmediavancouversun2.files.wordpress.com/2019/01/APTOPIX-Eagles-Bears-Football.jpg?w=300&h=200 300w, https://postmediavancouversun2.files.wordpress.com/2019/01/APTOPIX-Eagles-Bears-Football.jpg 700w” sizes=”(max-width: 640px) 100vw, …read more

Source:: Vancouver Sun – Sports

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