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Volume 24 No. 156
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Cam Newton's "MNF" Debut Draws 7.8 Overnight, Down From Week 12 Last Year

ESPN earned a 7.8 overnight Nielsen ratings for the Panthers’ 30-22 win over the Eagles last night, which marked Panthers QB Cam Newton’s first appearance on “MNF.” That figure is down 22% from a 10.0 overnight for the Saints’ blowout win over the Giants in Week 12 last year. In Charlotte, the game earned an 11.8 local rating on ESPN and a 10.5 rating on WCNC-NBC. In Philadelphia, the game earned a 12.2 rating on ESPN and an 11.9 rating on WPHL-Ind. (Austin Karp, THE DAILY).

: USA TODAY's Michael Hiestand writes it is a "big plus for the NFL and its TV carriers to have a strong 49ers team in the USA's No. 6 market." And while the Bears' 28-10 victory over the Vikings "wasn't suspenseful, but the big-market Bears making the playoffs would help ratings." Despite the Giants' 38-10 blowout of the Packers, the two "brand-name teams managed to draw a solid rating" (USA TODAY, 11/27). The Patriots set a new Thanksgiving Day franchise record with a 35.2 local rating for Thursday night's game against the Jets, beating out the previous high of a 25.2 for the Patriots-Lions matchup in '10 (Patriots).

FUTURE IS BRIGHT:'s Richard Deitsch wrote ESPN NFL analyst Eric Mangini "brings intellect and thoughtfulness to his analysis." He is "much more open on television than the tight-lipped coach we saw all too often in Cleveland and New York with the Jets." ESPN NFL Senior Coordinating Producer Seth Markman said, "I think Eric Mangini has been one of the biggest surprises in my 20 years at ESPN. When we hired him, it was a project. ... But I think he has been great on TV and I have had many viewers come to me and say, 'I didn't really want to like him but I do.'" Deitsch noted Mangini has a "multiple-year contract with ESPN, so if he stays out of coaching in 2013, he'll be back with the network." But he is a "young man in the coaching profession (he's just 41) and it's reasonable to assume he'll one day want to get back on the sidelines." Mangini said that he is "unsure how long he wants to remain in broadcasting." But he added that it has "given him an opportunity to do things with his children that he could never do as a coach." If he "stays in broadcasting, Mangini has a chance to be good" (, 11/26).