SBD/January 9, 2012/Media

CBS Earns 25.9 Overnight For Broncos' OT Win, Its Highest AFC Wild Card Game Rating

Broncos-Steelers overnight rating up 6.1% over comparable game last season

The Broncos' 29-23 OT win against the Steelers in the late window yesterday on CBS earned a 25.9 overnight Nielsen rating, the highest-rated Wild Card game in 24 years, dating back to a 26.7 overnight for NBC’s Seahawks-Oilers in ’88. The 25.9 rating is up 6.1% from a 24.4 for the comparable Packers-Eagles matchup on Fox last year, and up 37.8% from an 18.8 for CBS’ Ravens-Chiefs broadcast last year, which aired in the early window. The game began with a 20.4 rating at 4:45pm ET, rising during the game until a peak number of 31.6 from 8:00-8:15pm (Austin Karp, THE DAILY). CBSSPORTS.com's Gregg Doyel noted when Broncos QB Tim Tebow and his team are playing, "we watch." Doyel: "He isn't in the same class as an athlete, but as a spectacle Tebow is Tiger Woods leading the Masters on Sunday afternoon. He's Michael Jordan in the NBA Finals. He's the Yankees in the World Series" (CBSSPORTS.com, 1/8).

OTHER WILD CARD GAMES: Fox earned an 18.9 overnight for Giants-Falcons in the early window, which was up slightly from the comparable Ravens-Chiefs game on CBS last year, but down big from Packers-Eagles, which remains Fox’ best Wild Card overnight ever. The Saints’ 45-28 victory over the Lions Saturday night earned NBC a 19.3 overnight, which was down from last year’s record-setting 20.8 mark for Jets-Colts, but still high to enough to rank as the third-best Wild Card Saturday game since ’99. Earlier in the day, Texans-Bengals earned a 15.3 overnight on NBC, down 16.4% from Saints-Seahawks last year, which was the best Saturday Wild Card Game One in 20 years. For the Saturday doubleheader, NBC averaged a 17.2 overnight, marking the net’s third-best average since ’99 (Karp). In Houston, David Barron noted KPRC-NBC earned a 34.9 rating and drew a local audience of just under 743,000 HH for the Texans' win. The club's viewership is at "record levels locally, with six games" in '11 topping a 25.0 rating and 10 drawing a total audience of more than 800,000 viewers. Prior to this season, "only four Texans games had topped a 25.0" rating (CHRON.com, 1/8).

NFL WILD CARD WEEKEND OVERNIGHT NIELSEN RATINGS
NET
TIME (ET)
'12 GAME
RAT.
NET
'11 GAME
RAT.
% +/-
NBC
4:00pm
Texans-Bengals
15.3
NBC
Saints-Seahawks
18.3
-16.4%
NBC
8:30pm
Saints-Lions
19.3
NBC
Jets-Colts
20.8
-7.2%
Fox
1:00pm
Giants-Falcons
18.9
CBS
Ravens-Chiefs
18.8
0.5%
CBS
4:45pm
Broncos-Steelers
25.9
Fox
Packers-Eagles
24.4
6.1%
 
 

COVERAGE REVIEWS: In Denver, Dusty Saunders writes the Steelers-Broncos game yesterday "was the type of game that could have been broadcast by rookie announcers covering their first NFL game," as the cameras "told the story." Saunders: "Fortunately for viewers, CBS stars Jim Nantz and Phil Simms did their jobs." One production "strong point was the informative replays, narrated by Simms, showing how the defenses were dealing" with Tebow and Steelers QB Ben Roethlisberger. But CBS several years ago "dropped reporter sideline coverage during NFL games," though having one yesterday "would have added to Sunday's telecast" (DENVER POST, 1/9). In Tampa, Tom Jones notes with NBC "carrying two games Saturday and Fox and CBS each handling a game Sunday, we were able to watch each network's No. 1 announcing team." Jones writes NBC's Al Michaels and Cris Collinsworth "are the best, individually and as a team," and he enjoys Fox' Joe Buck and Troy Aikman. Jones says he is "not a fan of Nantz and Simms, though they brought their A game Sunday and might have had the best weekend of anyone on TV." Meanwhile, Jones notes he has "railed consistently this season against the 'Fox NFL Sunday' pregame show, mostly because the goofball behavior on it has been a distraction." However, yesterday it "seemed like a subdued crew." There were "no shenanigans and less than usual laughter over inside jokes and not-so-funny or inaudible putdowns." The result was a "rather enjoyable, informative show." It was "less about Fox's personalities and more about football" (TAMPA BAY TIMES, 1/9).

SCHOOL PRODUCTION: In Albany, Mark Singelais noted Siena College AD John D'Argenio "took the blame for the NFL cancelling his school's plans to simulcast the Giants-Falcons game on the Times Union Center scoreboard" during the school's men's basketball game yesterday. D'Argenio said that he "never checked with the NFL beforehand." The NFL told Siena on Saturday evening that "showing the game 'on a screen not similar to the size of one in someone's home,' was in violation of the league's copyright interests." D'Argenio declined to say whether he talked to WXXA-Fox, which "aired the game locally" (TIMESUNION.com, 1/8). The TIMES-UNION's Mark McGuire wrote the NFL "should have let this fly." McGuire: "Really, who would have been hurt here?" (TIMESUNION.com, 1/8).

CODE SCANNER: DAILY VARIETY's Rachel Abrams noted Fox was scheduled to "air a five-second 'billboard' clip of a QR code" during Giants-Falcons yesterday. The code, which can be "scanned on mobile devices, links the user to an online clip" of the upcoming movie "Chronicle" (VARIETY.com, 1/6).

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