Skip to content

NFL boasts most-watched Championship Sunday in 28 years

The NFL said today that Sunday’s AFC and NFC Championship Games drew a huge TV audience, giving the league its most-viewed Championship Sunday in 28 years.

The league also said that the Saints’ win over the Vikings was the most-viewed non-Super Bowl telecast on American Television since the Seinfeld finale in 1998.

With an average viewership of 52.9 million fans on Sunday, the league got its best conference championship numbers since January of 1982, when the Bengals beat the Chargers in a game that has come to be known as the Freezer Bowl, and the 49ers beat the Cowboys when Joe Montana hit Dwight Clark for “The Catch.”

The combined audience for Jets-Colts and Vikings-Saints represented a 34 percent increase over last season’s Championship Sunday.

Permalink 45 Comments Feed for comments Latest Stories in: Rumor Mill, Sprint Football Live - Rumors, Top Stories
45 Responses to “NFL boasts most-watched Championship Sunday in 28 years”
  1. WarrenMoonGOAT says: Jan 25, 2010 5:36 PM

    cool….now if only we could keep football being played IN america

  2. DJSlyBri says: Jan 25, 2010 5:38 PM

    Boy, it is a good thing America’s team made the NFC Championship Game because without them, the NFL just can’t get great ratings.

  3. Pervy Harvin says: Jan 25, 2010 5:43 PM

    And don’t fool yourselves. It was all generated by Brett Favre.Not the Saints. Not the Vikings. Favre is admired and watched by people who don’t even watch football! Read that Serena Williams was trying to channel Favre like competitiveness in an Australian tournament. She is inspired by him. He inspires many. (over 35 for sure) Football,ratings,and fans world wide will miss the gunslinger if he hangs it up. I find Manning,Brees and Brady totally boring compared to the old gunslinger.Guy is a character.

  4. aloud2judge says: Jan 25, 2010 5:43 PM

    Farve… F’n Diva. Just retire already.
    Signed,
    Green Gay Packer fan’s everywhere.

  5. billsrock1212 says: Jan 25, 2010 5:46 PM

    boycott the super bowl…NFC championship game was rigged against Favre!!

  6. Bob S. says: Jan 25, 2010 5:46 PM

    watched em both then
    collingsworth

  7. PackFaninPackLand says: Jan 25, 2010 5:49 PM

    Gee, I “wonder” who they watched because of ???

  8. leatherneck says: Jan 25, 2010 5:49 PM

    Great job, NFL. You had the biggest possible stage for a championship game, and your officials missed calls against the Saints for holding (during Drew Brees touchdown passes), blocking in the back (resulting in Cedric Griffin being seriously injured on a kickoff return, and the Saints getting the ball in overtime at their 40 yard line instead of at their 10), and personal foul hitting the quarterback below the knees (would have overturned Favre’s first interception of the night).
    Then they did call pass interference when Ben Leber didn’t even touch a Saints tight end and the ball was overthrown.
    The ball was spotted wrong after Greenway dislodged the ball from Pierre Thomas.
    Meachem dropped the ball, the tape showed it, and the officials still upheld it as a catch.
    That game was dominated by the Vikings and would have been won by them, had even one of those calls been made fairly.
    Utter disaster. The officials from that game should be relieved from their jobs.

  9. cwinckler says: Jan 25, 2010 5:52 PM

    I know Packer fans dont like it, but the reality is the most watched games on TV this year were the ones ol’Favre played in

  10. John El Way says: Jan 25, 2010 5:56 PM

    why should he retire when he can beat the Packers twice a year….the Lions twice a year, the Bucs twice a year……Packer fans need some cheese for all that whine

  11. .VoxVeritas says: Jan 25, 2010 5:57 PM

    “Boy, it is a good thing America’s team made the NFC Championship Game because without them, the NFL just can’t get great ratings.”
    Everybody wanted to see BertFarve choke. Again.

  12. Contra says: Jan 25, 2010 5:58 PM

    Hey Cowboy fans. Where are you with your stats on Cowboy games being the most watched? Vikings games were the most watched games this season and it was because of Favre. Just accept it…oh and by the way, drop the nickname “America’s Team”, you are Dallas’ Team. With a crap record and disastrous divisional game it gives America a bad rep. thanks!

  13. pdxbolt4life says: Jan 25, 2010 6:01 PM

    leatherneck says:
    January 25, 2010 5:49 PM
    Great job, NFL. You had the biggest possible stage for a championship game, and your officials missed calls against the Saints for holding (during Drew Brees touchdown passes), blocking in the back (resulting in Cedric Griffin being seriously injured on a kickoff return, and the Saints getting the ball in overtime at their 40 yard line instead of at their 10), and personal foul hitting the quarterback below the knees (would have overturned Favre’s first interception of the night).
    Then they did call pass interference when Ben Leber didn’t even touch a Saints tight end and the ball was overthrown.
    The ball was spotted wrong after Greenway dislodged the ball from Pierre Thomas.
    Meachem dropped the ball, the tape showed it, and the officials still upheld it as a catch.
    That game was dominated by the Vikings and would have been won by them, had even one of those calls been made fairly.
    Utter disaster. The officials from that game should be relieved from their jobs.
    ————————————————-
    What about all the turnovers???

  14. slipkid says: Jan 25, 2010 6:03 PM

    vikes played balls on the ground. and a coupla picks were served up by he who went out on top.
    ergo, they lost.
    and last year arizona was in the conference finals, plus another bruisefest from pitt/balto.
    this year had more novelty: jets backing in, colts backing in, saints playing in front of a championship-starved public, and he who went out on top.

  15. crankshaft420 says: Jan 25, 2010 6:08 PM

    Imagine the ratings of a Favre/Manning Superbowl? Apparently, the NFL doesn’t like money…

  16. bucco bruce says: Jan 25, 2010 6:10 PM

    Favre- Tailgate tested, Tailgate approved
    signed,
    Jimmy Football

  17. .VoxVeritas says: Jan 25, 2010 6:11 PM

    “I know Packer fans dont like it, but the reality is the most watched games on TV this year were the ones ol’Favre played in”
    Nyet. Negatory. Not. The Cowboys occupy 7 slots of the 11 top ratings-grabbing games for the 2009 season totalling almost 185 million viewers. Ol’ BertFarve and the Yikes had one (against Packers, which was #1 with 29.8 million viewers).

  18. dowens11 says: Jan 25, 2010 6:12 PM

    I wonder if the NFL can monitor ratings as the game is in progress? And if so, they have to be able to tell where the majority is coming from, right? Like the many sports conspiracy theorists, I have to believe that the game was fixed in N.O.’s favor. Yeah, the turnovers made it possible to be that close and eventually get the win, but the nails in the coffin came from the zebras, not Favre or the fumbles.

  19. PurpleIsForGays says: Jan 25, 2010 6:13 PM

    Hey Leatherneck; you are an ignorant bastard. The Vikings were given every call in the first half especially, and it was the only reason they hung in that game. That BS roughing the passer call that cost them 15 was a joke, then they call defensive holding when you fail to convert a 3rd & 5. The refs were pathetic but they didn’t do the Saints any favors.
    Who Dat….

  20. .VoxVeritas says: Jan 25, 2010 6:14 PM

    “Hey Cowboy fans. Where are you with your stats on Cowboy games being the most watched?”
    http://bizoffootball.com/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=604:2009-nfl-season-highest-viewed-in-20-years&catid=40:television&Itemid=57
    1. FOX Sunday National (mostly Vikings-Packers), 11/1 29.8 million
    2. FOX Sunday National (mostly Falcons at Cowboys), 10/25 28.4 million
    3. CBS Sunday National (Broncos-Eagles, Jets-Colts), 12/27 28.2 million
    4. FOX Sunday National (mostly Cowboys-Giants), 12/6 27.8 million
    5. FOX Sunday National (mostly Cowboys-Packers), 11/15 26.7 million
    6. FOX Sunday National (mostly Eagles-Cowboys), 1/3/10 26.5 million
    7. FOX Sunday National (Packers-Steelers, 49ers-Eagles), 12/20 25.8 million
    8. CBS Thanksgiving Day (Raiders-Cowboys), 11/26 25.2 million
    9. FOX Sunday National (mostly Redskins-Giants), 9/13 25.1 million
    10. NBC Sunday Night Football (Giants-Cowboys), 9/20 24.8 million
    11. CBS Sunday National (Chargers-Cowboys), 12/13 24.1 million
    12. 2010 Rose Bowl (Ohio State-Oregon), 1/1/10
    24.0 million
    13. CBS Sunday National (mostly Titans-Patriots), 10/18 23.9 million
    14. CBS Sunday National (mostly Steelers-Bears), 9/20 23.9 million
    15. FOX Sunday National (mostly Bears-Vikings), 11/29 23.6 million

  21. Majik Bullet says: Jan 25, 2010 6:16 PM

    aloud2judge says: January 25, 2010 5:43 PM
    Farve… F’n Diva. Just retire already.
    Signed,
    Green Gay Packer fan’s everywhere.
    _____________
    Funny how a story that doesn’t even contain the name “Brett Favre” still causes this reaction from bitter, scorned Packer fans.
    I’m pretty sure that if the Vikings would have won the Super Bowl, Favre would have been murdered, with the suspect being described as a guy wearing 52″ waist Zubaz with cheese on his head and who wreaked of Pabst Blue Ribbon and deep fried twinkies. The authorities would eventually give up trying to solve the case, as this description matches the entire population of Green Bay.

  22. .VoxVeritas says: Jan 25, 2010 6:17 PM

    The best part of the Vikings losing was the fact that we didn’t have to watch BertFarve limp into the post-game press conference and talk about how his ankle is shattered and how he gave it his all and is totally drained, kept going because he loves his teammates, and about how he doesn’t play for money, he just loves the game.

  23. edgy1957 says: Jan 25, 2010 6:18 PM

    Yeah and if there were 300 million Americans back in 1982, there would have been a hell of a lot more than 52.9 million watching the 49ers vs the Cowboys and the Chargers vs the Bengals. I’ve gotten so tired of the fact that people have moved toward talking about number of people watching and NOT percentage of households . This Super Bowl will draw more people than Super Bowl XVI (49.1%), Super Bowl XVII (48.6%) and Super Bowl XX (48.3%) but won’t come close to what their percentage of households was.

  24. NightTrainNeckTie says: Jan 25, 2010 6:19 PM

    leatherneck says:
    January 25, 2010 5:49 PM
    “Great job, NFL. You had the biggest possible stage for a championship game, and your officials missed calls against the Saints for holding (during Drew Brees touchdown passes), blocking in the back….blah blah blah blah”
    Vikings lost that game. Vikings LOST. they had a chance to win and the coaching staff bungled the call resulting in a penalty and then Mr. Favre did what he does, threw a terrible interception in a crucial playoff moment.
    VIKINGS LOST!
    “Contra says:
    January 25, 2010 5:58 PM

  25. Longsnapper says: Jan 25, 2010 6:22 PM

    Favre on the ground
    Favre on the ground
    Looking like a fool with your Favre on the ground
    Hat knocked sideways
    Throwin all them picks
    Looking like a fool with your Favre on the ground

  26. Majik Bullet says: Jan 25, 2010 6:22 PM

    .VoxVeritas says: January 25, 2010 6:11 PM
    “I know Packer fans dont like it, but the reality is the most watched games on TV this year were the ones ol’Favre played in”
    Nyet. Negatory. Not. The Cowboys occupy 7 slots of the 11 top ratings-grabbing games for the 2009 season totalling almost 185 million viewers. Ol’ BertFarve and the Yikes had one (against Packers, which was #1 with 29.8 million viewers).
    ____________
    So the Vikes had the most watched game in the regular season, and the most watched game in the playoffs, yet you say the Cowboys had the most watched games, and not the Vikings. I’m not sure I follow the logic, as it appears to me that the Vikings lay claim to the top spots.

  27. .VoxVeritas says: Jan 25, 2010 6:27 PM

    “Yeah, the turnovers made it possible to be that close and eventually get the win, but the nails in the coffin came from the zebras, not Favre or the fumbles.”
    OK 19 seconds left and the Vikes get a legit 12th man call against them to push them back to the 38 (still long FG range for Longwell, he was 2 of 2 at 50+ this season), then BertFarve attempts a 15+ yard pass into coverage for an easy INT to end ALL hope of winning the game in regulation, and it’s the refs’ fault?
    That was the definition of “choke job”.

  28. Fan of Football says: Jan 25, 2010 6:29 PM

    These ratings will disappear when/if Favre retires.

  29. Fan of Football says: Jan 25, 2010 6:30 PM

    “Nyet. Negatory. Not. The Cowboys occupy 7 slots of the 11 top ratings-grabbing games for the 2009 season totalling almost 185 million viewers. Ol’ BertFarve and the Yikes had one (against Packers, which was #1 with 29.8 million viewers).”
    Negative. The highest rating for a regular season game, prime time game, Monday night game, Divisional playoff game, and Conference Championship game all had one common factor: Brett Favre, America’s favorite player.

  30. dowens11 says: Jan 25, 2010 6:43 PM

    @ edgy
    Absolutely right. Therein lies the problem with statistics without context. It’s just like when a blockbuster movie breaks records for earnings; No Shit! It didn’t cost $12-15 per ticket to go see E.T. or Star Wars.

  31. SF Saints Fan says: Jan 25, 2010 6:47 PM

    The Monady Morning Officiating is getting kind of old. The Vikings lost. There were as many, if not more, bad calls against the Saints. The Vikings had a great season and would not have been in the position they were in without Favre. After all of the losing seasons and total futility of the Saints over four plus decades, I don’t feel sorry for you, but I do feel your pain. Work on your stadium issues (I have been in your stadium and it sucks.) and just keep hope alive. As a Saints fan, I have said it more than just about any other football fan, there is always next year.
    On the ratings front, local media in New Orleans has reported that locally the Saints game last night drew a 62.3 Rating and an 82 Share, which is reportedly the highest local rating of any market for an NFL game ever…….

  32. Bucforever says: Jan 25, 2010 6:52 PM

    As a football fan ,a REAL football fan, I say they were both great games with outstanding teams . I had a lot of fun, got really entertained . I was able to forget about the real world ,the terrorists. the earthquakes, famine , sickness,war,
    the economy,unemployment and all the other really terrible things going on in this old world for just a few hours. Isn’t that why we all really watch sports anyway, to escape for awhile?
    Why ,the enormous amount of money that is spent [ note I did not say wasted]on pro sports would go a long way in curing a lot of the world wide ills noted above.
    Just a thought . Now back to the games ! I do love my football!

  33. Schau3r says: Jan 25, 2010 7:14 PM

    @Majik Bullet
    Funny how a story that doesn’t even contain the name “Brett Favre” still causes this reaction from bitter, scorned Packer fans.
    I’m pretty sure that if the Vikings would have won the Super Bowl, Favre would have been murdered, with the suspect being described as a guy wearing 52″ waist Zubaz with cheese on his head and who wreaked of Pabst Blue Ribbon and deep fried twinkies. The authorities would eventually give up trying to solve the case, as this description matches the entire population of Green Bay.
    ————————————————–
    I’m from Green Bay. What’s your point? I don’t get it…hahaha. Idiot.

  34. .VoxVeritas says: Jan 25, 2010 7:15 PM

    “So the Vikes had the most watched game in the regular season, and the most watched game in the playoffs, yet you say the Cowboys had the most watched games, and not the Vikings.”
    Right.
    “I’m not sure I follow the logic, as it appears to me that the Vikings lay claim to the top spots.”
    Only if you count the top regular season game and the top playoff game. Technically that satisfies the plural part to the post that I was responding to but conference championship games are going to draw huge audiences no matter who plays. If you look at the past year, a qualifier mentioned by the original poster, it’s obvious that most of the top ratings grabber games were games that involve the Cowboys. As I said, almost 185 million viewers in the top 11 alone. You probably can’t touch that with all Vikings games combined, playoff games included (even if you say that the divisional game between the Cowboys and Vikings was rated so highly just because of the Vikings. NFC champ game too. Those two playoff games plus the Packers game are still 50 million viewers short).

  35. Castro95 says: Jan 25, 2010 7:25 PM

    When Favre retires he will retire as a Packer and go to the Hall of fame as a Packer. The guy is great weather you like him or not. For everybody who does not like Favre the game becomes more exciting because you want him to lose. Its not quite the same as hating on jamarcus russell. Give the man a break he played football for us fans because he could of sat at home and made the same amount of money not playing.

  36. JimmySmith says: Jan 25, 2010 7:49 PM

    The Packers are always in the top 3 or 4 in Tv ratings, they have a national draw so Favre got his following nationally as a Packer. If the Vikings think its because of them, don’t let on, just let them enjoy their fantasy, similar to the one they were enjoying last week, you know, we are going to the Superbowl.
    So America tuned in to see if he could break his bad habits and much like driving past a wreck on the freeway, everybody slowed down to take a look. Turns out its the same ol Brent Favre, blowing up when it counted the most, costing them a game they should have never lost but lost they did, its the Vikings, home of the empty trophy case.
    What’s the difference between Linda Lovelace and the MN Vikings? Linda doesn’t choke on the big one.

  37. .VoxVeritas says: Jan 25, 2010 7:55 PM

    “Negative. The highest rating for a regular season game, prime time game, Monday night game, Divisional playoff game, and Conference Championship game all had one common factor: Brett Favre, America’s favorite player. ”
    That’s incorrect. The highest rated prime time game was Cowboys/Giants SNF with 24.8 million viewers on 9/20, the most to watch a prime time game in 12 years. Vikings/Packers in prime time on 10/5 drew only 21.8 million viewers.

  38. slipkid says: Jan 25, 2010 8:16 PM

    what are local football telecasts? we dont have those near detroit.
    ya cant count games involving NY. NYers only watch games that the giants win.
    and about the vicodins, folks: TURNOVERS.

  39. RWFV says: Jan 25, 2010 8:35 PM

    I think it’s safe to say that the Vikings are now Americas team
    Screw you Dallas

  40. jamesz23 says: Jan 25, 2010 8:57 PM

    Majik Bullet’s post is the funniest 1 I’ve read on here in a long time – I literally laughed out loud – unbelievably funny! Size 52 zubaz pants lol.
    FOF I think its safe to say Brett Favre DEFINITELY has as many haters across this great country of ours as he does people that love him. That is very obvious today as I see the comments on websites. Only you think its 90 percent love.

  41. Bob Sacamono says: Jan 25, 2010 9:01 PM

    52.9 million is impressive and once you add that to the Pro Bowl viewers this coming weekend, that number should jump to 53 million even.

  42. Majik Bullet says: Jan 25, 2010 10:15 PM

    Schau3r says: January 25, 2010 7:14 PM
    @Majik Bullet
    Funny how a story that doesn’t even contain the name “Brett Favre” still causes this reaction from bitter, scorned Packer fans.
    I’m pretty sure that if the Vikings would have won the Super Bowl, Favre would have been murdered, with the suspect being described as a guy wearing 52″ waist Zubaz with cheese on his head and who wreaked of Pabst Blue Ribbon and deep fried twinkies. The authorities would eventually give up trying to solve the case, as this description matches the entire population of Green Bay.
    ————————————————–
    I’m from Green Bay. What’s your point? I don’t get it…hahaha. Idiot.
    _____________
    You, my dim witted example, are the point.

  43. 30PTBUCK says: Jan 25, 2010 10:39 PM

    YOU KNOW IT’S JUST BRENT THE RATINGS WERE FOR.
    HE’S THE TIGER WOODS OF FOOTBALL EXCEPT TIGER DOESN’T CHOKE REPEATEDLY IN CHAMPIONSHIP SITUATIONS.
    WATCH FOR THE FOLLOWING NEWS REPORTS
    DEANNA: WELL OFFICER AFTER HE CRASHED HIS TRACTOR I HAD TO BREAK OUT THE REAR WINDOW WITH HIS SAMSUNG TV
    BRENT: DUH DUH DUH
    DEANNA: IF I EVER CATCH YOU WITH THOSE SLUTTY VIKING’S FANS AGAIN NOT ONLY WILL I DETAINT YOU I’LL DO THE SAME TO YOUR PARTY GIRLS PERVY,MAJIK BULLET AND VOX VERITAS.
    NOW SHAKE YOUR CRYING FAKE RETIREMENT ACTING TOOSH AND MAKE ME MONEY BIATCH

  44. scomibord says: Jan 26, 2010 12:26 AM

    30ptbuck
    That was some funny stuff. Who’s you source. Love the party girls. I can see the pervert & silver bullet, but Vox, he’s a cowboy fan. really inconsequential. Hahahahahahahahahahahahahaaha, they oughta love the Pro Bowl. Except the Queens are too sore from being pummelled Sunday. Hahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahaha

  45. fellasheowed says: Jan 26, 2010 1:01 AM

    ok, this is retarded, thinking this has to do with favre, manning any of the teams or players….
    its the economy stupid….
    in better times, more people go out to the bar and watch the games, or they have other stuff to do because they have such busy lives, wasting 7 hrs on a couch isn’t a great way to spend that time, or they have other ways of sharing that community spirit of “i’m not that into it, but everyone else is doing it, and i want to belong”
    but when the economy sucks,
    people have less compressed leisure time, so watching football, even games not involving their team, appeals to them more, its on, and it doesn’t suck, and they have seen everything else that is on the other channels already… plus they aren’t actually engaged in those other activities, including work, because there is less going on, that they actually have the option of how to spend that time…
    gee, i may or may not have a job soon, the house is hanging by a thread from being foreclosed, the bills are behind, christmas was a killer, am i?
    going out to spend 40-100 bucks in a bar on beer, food, and whatelse, or, buy 10 bucks worth of hootch, maybe a couple extra bucks on some grub i wouldn’t eat otherwise, and applaud my self for being smart with my money and staying home to watch….which counts for more in the advertisers mind, anyway.

Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to leave a comment. Not a member? Register now!