SBD/October 14, 2013/Media

Week 6 Overnights: Fox' Patriots-Saints Boost National-Window Broadcast

Fox earned a 17.5 overnight rating for the Patriots' 30-27 last-second win over the Saints yesterday. The game, which was featured in 86% of the national window, was up 8.7% from a 16.1 for the Giants-49ers last year. Fox had a 11.6 for its regional coverage, which was up from 11.5 in '12. Meanwhile, NBC earned an 13.6 overnight for the Cowboys’ 31-16 win over the Redskins on “SNF” last night, a 7.9% jump from Packers-Texans last year. "SNF" had competition from Tigers-Red Sox ALCS Game 2 coverage on Fox. CBS' single coverage earned a 10.9 overnight rating, down 5.2% from an 11.5 in Week 6 last season (Joe Perez, Assistant Editor).

NFL WEEK 6 SUNDAY OVERNIGHTS
NET
'13 GAME
RAT.
'12 GAME
RAT.
% +/-
CBS
(single)
10.9
(single)
11.5
-5.2%
Fox
(regional)
11.6
(regional)
11.5
0.9%
Fox
Saints-Patriots (86%)
17.5
Giants-49ers (77%)
16.1
8.7%
NBC
Redskins-Cowboys
13.6
Packers-Texans
12.6
7.9%

COVERING A TRAGEDY
: The death of Vikings RB Adrian Peterson’s two-year-old son dominated the beginning of the NFL pregame shows. ESPN’s “Sunday NFL Countdown” opened with Chris Berman alone on-screen, reporting the news around the child’s death. Various tweets from Peterson offering his thanks to family, fans and friends were shown before ESPN’s Josina Anderson gave a live report from the Metrodome. Berman concluded the segment before the show went to commercial. The show then came back with the entire studio crew on-air and began its regular proceedings. Both Fox and CBS also began their pregame shows with a report on Peterson. Fox showed Peterson walking into the Metrodome before studio host Curt Menefee discussed the situation. Fox' Laura Okmin live from the Metrodome read a text from Peterson about his desire to play in today's game. CBS also showed Peterson walking into the stadium, and the net's Lesley Visser offered a report from Minneapolis before host James Brown started the weekly review of games. NFL Network’s “NFL GameDay Morning” began with an overview of Week 6 storylines before going into the Peterson story four minutes into the show (THE DAILY). But SI.com's Richard Deitsch wrote timing and tone "sometimes gets overshadowed by sports networks attempting to collect revenue." Fox yesterday had a "thoughtful report" from Okmin on Peterson "at the top of its show with a curious lead-in: Actor Chris Hemsworth hawking his new movie Thor" (SI.com, 10/13).

A DIFFERENT PERSPECTIVE: In Baltimore, David Zurawik wrote Fox' telecast of Packers-Ravens was "far from perfect, but what a vast improvement over any coverage provided this season by CBS Sports." It was a "relief" to hear someone "call out Ravens coach John Harbaugh for his bad decisions." There was a "lot to like in the Fox broadcast beyond" analyst Daryl Johnston's "hard-nosed analysis." The director created "a rhythm to the telecast through the repetition of certain images, camera angles, sounds and commentary" (BALTIMORESUN.com, 10/13).

GIANTS OF THE INDUSTRY: In N.Y., Bill Carter takes a look at the fall TV schedule after three weeks and notes the NFL is so popular that “nothing is going to pry viewers” away from it. If TV execs “want a new show to do well, it is probably best to avoid Mondays, Thursdays and Sundays.” NBC’s new drama, “Ironside,” “collapsed in its second week; so did the new comedies ‘Welcome to the Family’ and ‘Sean Saves the World’ last Thursday.” Not “coincidentally, that was a night when the NFL Network offered a game with strong appeal in two big cities” with Giant-Bears. The top 13 shows this season are all NFL games (N.Y. TIMES, 10/14).

PEACHY KEEN: In Atlanta, Tim Tucker noted the Falcons' loss to the Jets last Monday night "surpassed in the local Nielsen ratings Georgia’s overtime victory over Tennessee and, by a wide margin, the Braves’ playoff games against the Dodgers." The Jets-Falcons telecast "delivered a combined 21.6 rating in the Atlanta TV market" on ESPN and WSB-ABC, while Georgia’s win at Tennessee "posted a 16.8 rating in the Atlanta market on CBS." The Braves’ elimination by the Dodgers in the NLDS "drew Atlanta ratings of 10.2 for Game 1, 9.0 for Game 2 and 7.3 for both Games 3 and 4." The Jets-Falcons game was "watched in about 514,000 Atlanta-area homes, the Georgia-Tennessee game in about 400,000 and the Braves playoff games in an average of about 201,000" (AJC.com, 10/11).

A BIRD IN HAND: ABC's "GMA" yesterday examined the NFL's partnership with Twitter, and host Bianna Golodryga noted it will "create and tweet out cool special programming for its fans." NFL Senior VP/Media & Strategy Hans Schroeder said fans want to "see our content, and increasingly consumers want it where they are." ABC's Sara Haines reported along with "on-demand clips of the game, follow @NFL and you'll get news and analysis." Haines: "But for many fans, the clear MVP is fantasy football advice straight from the league itself." Schroeder said fans are "increasingly watching our games and looking at their phone and being able to reach people realtime thru that Twitter platform in places where maybe they're out and about is a great way to expose them and remind them that, 'Hey, the NFL has a game going on right now'" ("GMA," ABC, 10/13).

CAMERA SHY
: In San Diego, Nick Canepa wrote HBO's "Hard Knocks" is a "reality show that isn't real," and it is "a bad watch." Canepa: "Maybe fans get a kick out of it. Still, they should know that, while what they’re seeing may not be scripted, a lot of it doesn’t depict how the NFL in August really is. Why? Because it’s on television, and TV can make this sort of thing very different." When the camera light "goes on, many athletes and coaches are prone to project different images of themselves," something that is "natural." Canepa: "Listen to a player or coach miked during games. Then listen to them when they aren’t wired. Not close" (SAN DIEGO UNION-TRIBUNE, 10/13). Meanwhile, THE MMQB's Peter King writes, "Forcing a team to do Hard Knocks, as the NFL suggested it could do last week to ensure the show going on each summer at some team’s training camp, is just plain wrong" (MMQB.SI.com, 10/14).
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