The early Super Bowl TV ratings are in, and if you needed any more proof that Philadelphia watched in huge numbers, here it is.
Nielsen reported Monday morning that the Philadelphia market — the nation’s fourth largest for TV viewership — delivered a whopping 56.2 rating and 81 share for the Eagles’ thrilling 41-33 triumph over the New England Patriots.
Those numbers mean that 56.2 percent of all TV households in the region watched the game, and 81 percent of all households in the region that were watching TV on Sunday night were watching the Super Bowl. The rating and share are the best such figures in Philadelphia for any Super Bowl ever.
Nielsen’s 2017 audience measurement of the Philadelphia market determined that there are 28,696 households in one local ratings point. That adds up to approximately 1.6 million households watching the game. The exact number of local viewers might not be announced, but since many households have multiple people in them, you can guess that the number of viewers was well more than 1.6 million.
Philadelphia was not the top local TV market for the Eagles’ win, believe it or not. That honor goes to a city that shares this town’s ability to suffer, and maybe knows it even worse: Buffalo. The upstate New York market delivered a 56.4 rating and 78 share.
Boston was the No. 3 market. Super Bowl host city Minneapolis was No. 4. Here’s the ranking of top markets across the country, according to Nielsen and NBC:
1. Buffalo, 56.4/78
2. Philadelphia, 56.2/81
3. Boston, 55.9/81
4. Minneapolis-St. Paul, 54.9/82
5. Pittsburgh, 54.9/73
6. Norfolk, 53.9/73
7. New Orleans, 53.0/72
8. Providence, 52.5/77
9. Milwaukee, 52.3/73
10. Seattle, 52.2/79
11. Kansas City, 52.2/73
The national rating was 47.4 and the national share was 70, peaking at 52.2 and 74 in the fourth quarter from 10 to 10:15 p.m. Eastern.
Adding up the TV and online streaming audiences, there were a combined 106 million viewers across platforms. The TV broadcast on NBC drew 103.4 million viewers; the Spanish-language simulcast on Universo drew 543,000 viewers; and online streaming drew 2.02 million viewers.
Counting just the television audience, the total makes for the 10th-most watched TV broadcast in U.S. history. But that’s well short of eight other Super Bowls. The 2015 NFL title game between the Patriots and Seattle Seahawks, Super Bowl XLIX, remains the all-time most-watched TV program ever at 114.4 million viewers. Last year’s Patriots-Falcons Super Bowl on Fox, which went to overtime, drew 111.3 million viewers. The 2016 Broncos-Panthers Super Bowl on CBS drew 111.9 million viewers.
This year’s Eagles-Patriots game drew a far larger audience than the last time the two teams met in the Super Bowl, in 2005. That year’s broadcast drew 86.1 million viewers on Fox.
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