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Broncos’ season-opening win viewed by 25.1 million people

Baltimore Ravens v Denver Broncos Getty Images

The NFL’s dominance over the American television landscape continues.

Thursday night’s Ravens-Broncos NFL opener was watched by 25.1 million viewers, a 5 percent increase over the Cowboys-Giants game that kicked off the season last year.

The 25.1 million figure makes Thursday night’s game the third-most watched NFL opener since the league started opening the season on Thursday night in 2002. The 2010 and 2011 openers were both seen by more than 27 million viewers.

Those of you who joined us for the NBC Sports Live Extra stream of the game were in good company: Fans watched nearly 20.5 million minutes of game action online, easily breaking the regular-season record of 10.6 million minutes, set last season for 49ers-Patriots.

Ravens-Broncos likely would have drawn even more viewers without the 33-minute delay that caused the game to start after 9 p.m. Eastern, and would have done better still if the Broncos didn’t turn the game into a laugher in the fourth quarter, when millions of Americans surely decided it was time to go to bed as a not-very-competitive game ran past midnight on the East Coast. The NFL is so popular that a game doesn’t have to be a great one to draw a great number of viewers.

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53 Responses to “Broncos’ season-opening win viewed by 25.1 million people”
  1. stillers213 says: Sep 6, 2013 5:53 PM

    It’s a good thing they are the Ravens and not the Crows. Otherwise, joemontanaflacco and his band of trolls would have to eat themselves after all of their offseason smack talk.

  2. Nofoolnodrool says: Sep 6, 2013 5:54 PM

    Very fitting that the luckiest SB champ gets the worst beating in history on opening night.karma was paying the rat turds back for their adoration of a criminal. Everyone is laughing at the air bags from Charm city.

  3. sullijo1 says: Sep 6, 2013 5:56 PM

    The Broncos had 7 passing TDs last night – the KC Chiefs had 8 passing TDs all last year….

    Hilarious!

  4. raynman49 says: Sep 6, 2013 5:57 PM

    I wish they could start these games earlier. If I were a school age fan, I’d be upset not being able to watch even half a game in the east.

  5. tonyugoh says: Sep 6, 2013 5:57 PM

    Whether you are a fan of his or don’t like him, its pretty evident that Peyton Manning is the league’s biggest star and is probably the most popular player in NFL history.

  6. southernpatriots says: Sep 6, 2013 5:59 PM

    All my friends, neighbors, and colleagues were…

    READY FOR SOME FOOTBALL!!!!!

    We all watched “the old man” Peyton Manning and team put on a clinic for the Ravens. I would have liked to have seen some of that vaunted defense that the Ravens were talking about. I did not think that Manning and company would be so good, but they were.

    Those who were fans of every other NFL team in my area, watched that game and all are still talking about it.

  7. t8ertot says: Sep 6, 2013 6:02 PM

    Please for the love of god, no more Ryan Seacrest

  8. fmdragons59 says: Sep 6, 2013 6:02 PM

    I had those Orange Jerseys – They Suck !!!

  9. fmdragons59 says: Sep 6, 2013 6:02 PM

    I meant I hate
    those Orange Jerseys – They Suck !!!

  10. stillers213 says: Sep 6, 2013 6:05 PM

    “Broncos’ season-opening win viewed by 25.1 million people” …… and about 1.25 million trolls who are mysteriously quiet today

  11. Nofoolnodrool says: Sep 6, 2013 6:06 PM

    Scoobies I know you were one of the millions who saw the game but like joeflaccomontana you are in hiding. It’s great to bash other teams when you are on top….but to hide wen you lose is just……in character for a raven troll….pathetic.

  12. reed20fence says: Sep 6, 2013 6:06 PM

    Great!

    That’s 25 million viewers who’ll be wondering (Ravens Fans included) how these guys look abysmal at some point every regular season and still manage to make it to the playoffs and clobber their opponents when it’s win or go home time.

    Loving it!

  13. stillers213 says: Sep 6, 2013 6:07 PM

    t8ertot says:
    “Please for the love of god, no more Ryan Seacrest”

    Tha NFL missed an opportunity there. They could have had each team captain sing and dance with the viewing audience deciding who gets the opening kickoff! :)

  14. forsbergler says: Sep 6, 2013 6:23 PM

    Big Points I noticed.
    1. Dumervil was nowhere to be seen. What a waste of 7 mil.
    2. This D does not hit like they did last year. The new saftey play looked horrible.
    3. This Defense’s coverage skills looked looked all together bad.
    4. The Offence looked very out of sync and unconfident.
    5. Running game looked pathetic
    6. TE play needs someone to step up.
    7. Oher and Jones being out is bad news if it’s for a long time.

    was an extremely satisfing victory to watch and was nice to see Rahim Moore have a nice bounce back game

  15. golforepar says: Sep 6, 2013 6:27 PM

    So now we know 25 million people saw Manning throwing bounce passes that were ruled a catch!
    But the refs never saw it???
    Manning is not in need of help. If that continues the NFL must like the idea that Manning goes out with another ring.

  16. Deb says: Sep 6, 2013 6:32 PM

    Great opener for the season. A lot of action, a little drama, and not too much interference from the officials. Interesting to learn so many participated online since I spent much less time online than usual. Had missed football so much I just wanted to focus on the game. Seeing the list of names Manning joined in the record book gave me chills. Nice to be around when history is made. Can’t wait for Sunday!

  17. TheWizard says: Sep 6, 2013 6:34 PM

    East coast + 10 hour workdays + game delay for drizzle = only saw the 1st quarter

  18. poormanspoison says: Sep 6, 2013 6:39 PM

    25.1 million satisfied viewers

  19. pilot2011 says: Sep 6, 2013 6:40 PM

    its all the nfl cares about.

    “Hey it’s raining outside, lets delay the game for “lightning” to make sure everyone has time to get to the tv from coast to coast.”

    No doubt in my mind it was conjured up by the suits.

  20. marcuswelby1 says: Sep 6, 2013 6:43 PM

    Where are all the mouthy, trash talk in’ Ravens fans?

  21. goodellisruiningtheleague says: Sep 6, 2013 6:44 PM

    golforepar says:
    Sep 6, 2013 6:27 PM
    So now we know 25 million people saw Manning throwing bounce passes that were ruled a catch!
    But the refs never saw it???
    Manning is not in need of help. If that continues the NFL must like the idea that Manning goes out with another ring.

    ————————————————–

    I guarantee you were one of those ravens fans telling 49ers fans to quit whining about that last pass in the Super Bowl that could have put them ahead.

    Hypocrisy is hilarious.

  22. justintuckrule says: Sep 6, 2013 6:46 PM

    It’s ashame that Goodell knows we are all crackheads jonesing for a football fix. He’s stepped on that crack so many times that what passes for 30% purity is now snorted up by the masses. I’m guilty of it too. However, I wish we all had the willpower to put down the pipe for one weekend. If we did, we’d have our unadulterated, 100% pure, 1990 crack back in 3 days. Not this 7 tds in 4 minutes, 7 on 7, no defense snoozefest brand.

  23. Nofoolnodrool says: Sep 6, 2013 6:47 PM

    Where are all the mouthy, trash talk in’ Ravens fans?

    Where do little Bo’s go when they are afraid of thunder? Their mommies skirt…Nuff said joeflaccomontana and ravens dominate… Babies

  24. golforepar says: Sep 6, 2013 6:55 PM

    goodell,
    Football/Packers fan….not a Ravens fan. Did Manning have 2 bounce passes called complete?

  25. thetooloftools says: Sep 6, 2013 6:57 PM

    Children under 12 should NOT be allowed into an NFL game. “Family Friendly” is driving off the long term fan. The NFL won’t get this until it’s too late.

  26. stunzeed5 says: Sep 6, 2013 7:00 PM

    Lol @ ravanator

  27. peytonsneck18 says: Sep 6, 2013 7:02 PM

    huff is what everybody thought he was, horrible, flacco the 120 million overpaid QB, and the one trick pony WR Smith, gonna be a long miserable season for the WAHHvens, in OZ u lose!!!!!

  28. Sef Sheek says: Sep 6, 2013 7:04 PM

    As a ravens fan, I will admit that our loss was EMBARRASSING. Our receivers (especially our tight-ends) couldn’t get separation or even catch a lot of the balls. Michael Huff flat out sucked, Corey Graham sucked, and even Lardarius started to suck near the end. Congrats broncos fans. Unfortunately, you guys have the bragging rights now so brag away.

  29. ghjjf says: Sep 6, 2013 7:06 PM

    Ravens defense looked like an arena league defense

  30. sheriffpeyton18 says: Sep 6, 2013 7:33 PM

    Why wasn’t there anything about peyton and near records he broke last night. The man is simply the best in the nfl!

  31. steelcurtainn says: Sep 6, 2013 7:37 PM

    25 million seen how mediocre the ravens really are. Worse superbowl representing team at least in the past 10 years or more.

  32. dacoolnamesweretaken says: Sep 6, 2013 7:38 PM

    The defense wasn’t even terrible, the offense never gave them time to rest…

  33. broncosnative says: Sep 6, 2013 7:42 PM

    @self sheek, good sportsmanship unlike your other fellow raven fans who talked a lot of smack months leading to this game and now invisible after the lost. I’ve saved 4 different fans comments who done the most trash talking so I could fine them later, couldn’t find not 1. If the broncos lost last night, I too would be on here giving my thoughts and giving the ravens their props. Lucky for the ravens, they have the browns next to redeem themselves and build confidence.

  34. bmoreravens1012013 says: Sep 6, 2013 7:43 PM

    Still the champs suckers , and its 1 out of 16 so all you haters …..eat one. Most of you who are pouring on are fans of teams that wish they had the Ravens’ resume over the last umpteen years.

  35. packhawk04 says: Sep 6, 2013 7:58 PM

    Yes, the officials called two passes complete that hit the ground. They missed them, because they’re human. In order to help with the human element of officiating, the NFL allows each coach two challenges per half, 3 if they get the first two correct. It is up to the coaches to throw them.

    So, maybe john harbaugh wants to make sure manning goes out with a ring?

  36. Nofoolnodrool says: Sep 6, 2013 8:01 PM

    bmoreravens1012013 says:
    Sep 6, 2013 7:43 PM
    Still the champs suckers , and its 1 out of 16 so all you haters …..eat one. Most of you who are pouring on are fans of teams that wish they had the Ravens’ resume over the last umpteen years.

    0 0
    Report comment. Try five years …not umpteen cundiff years. When you get to six please give me a wake up call….right!

  37. peytonsneck18 says: Sep 6, 2013 8:15 PM

    ravens fans act like their team are the only ones who’s won a SB, my team won SB41, so get over yalselves

  38. hatetriot4life says: Sep 6, 2013 8:18 PM

    wow sounds like all.patriot fans that are commenting.on.ravens.loss lol.karma coming. for patriots too.so.get.ready.for peyton.to.go.to foxboro n hand out tissues to tom lady n.the.bunch

  39. hatetriot4life says: Sep 6, 2013 8:20 PM

    ravens beat manning once wen it counted but peyton owns the ravens …I’m not a bronco but rep dallas n.follow peyton who is the only qb who.should b.talked about besides the spygate fairy in new england

  40. iamapatsfan says: Sep 6, 2013 9:03 PM

    hatetriot4life…

    I’m sorry, why are you here? I looked, and this was under Denver Broncos, Baltimore Ravens, Rumor Mill and Home. No where in there is “Patriots”. So, please, if you’re going to showoff your great intelligence, please at least do it in an appropriate setting to your name and content. Although I’d rather you just not post at all. You’re not quite understandable.

    Great use of periods and not-quite-words, though. Really edgy…

    As for the game, it really turned when the Ravens lost Jones and Oher. Before that they were moving the ball quite well. After that, they went 3 and out way too much, leaving Peyton all the time he needs to move down the field, throwing to that guy in 83 that just looks SO out of place in orange, heh.

    Amendola better be awesome, cause Welker is looking great, as usual, with only one really stupid move on that kick return.

    P.S. – Thank God (or is it Goodell…?) football is back.

  41. pleasefirecam says: Sep 6, 2013 9:35 PM

    Its one game, calm down clowns. They spanked us in week 15 last year, the playoffs are all that matter. Peyton is the best regular season qb, but a .500 qb in the playoffs….so yeah, keep on drinking the haterade while cheering on your uncle TOMlin coach!

  42. indianarams says: Sep 6, 2013 9:53 PM

    25 million at kickoff and 12 people left watching at 200 o’clock in the morning. Rain delay, what a joke, Goodell didn’t want to get his loafers wet. “Dangerous” thunder, where? Yet all 100,000 fans were still sitting in their seats and the reporters were reporting from the field during this ferocious storm?

  43. realskipbayless says: Sep 6, 2013 9:58 PM

    Ravens=last place in the AFC.

  44. sc49ers says: Sep 6, 2013 10:01 PM

    Of course its football…

  45. raiders757 says: Sep 6, 2013 10:32 PM

    …and suddenly in the 4th quarter, that 25 million dropped to about five million.

    Awesome performance by Manning. No doubt THE best QB of this generation despite his playoff record. That said, a great game was ruined with the second half blowout. You could just hear the channels changing the more it went on.

    Opening night was a disappointment. A weather delayed game, Ryan Seacrest(seriously, WTF?), an awesome first half, then (cue in Price Is Right fail music). By the end of it, I can only imagine that the only people outside of Denver watching the game, were the ten out of state Donkey fans and TV’s left on at the homes of those that lost interest, but left it playing for background noise.

  46. yourteamstinks says: Sep 6, 2013 10:48 PM

    The funniest thing (to me) about Ravens fans is that they think they should be mentioned in the same breathe as franchises like the Steelers, Giants, Niners, Cowboys (please notice I purposely left out cheaters). They finally won a second SB – woo hoo – they also barely made the playoffs. They got lucky and hot at the right time – they will never admit that out loud but they know it is true.

  47. beerndrums says: Sep 6, 2013 11:24 PM

    You Broncos fans crack me up.You act like you won the SB after week one….. and I’m not a Ravens fan either

  48. bobzilla1001 says: Sep 6, 2013 11:24 PM

    According to KDKA-TV sports anchor and Big Ben Fan Club President Bob Pompeani, Mike Tomlin said on his twitter page: “Joe Flacco’s quarterback rating was LOL.”
    I’m surprised more hasn’t been made of Tomlin’s startling remarks. Is their no one in charge of this once dignified organization anymore?

  49. pack13queens0 says: Sep 6, 2013 11:46 PM

    There would have been 50 million watching if the Packers were playing in that game.

  50. Nofoolnodrool says: Sep 7, 2013 8:57 AM

    According to KDKA-TV sports anchor and Big Ben Fan Club President Bob Pompeani, Mike Tomlin said on his twitter page: “Joe Flacco’s quarterback rating was LOL.”
    I’m surprised more hasn’t been made of Tomlin’s startling remarks. Is their no one in charge of this once dignified organization anymore?

    Who do you suggest should be in charge other than yourself……Archie Bunker?

  51. dallascowboysdishingthereal says: Sep 7, 2013 9:48 AM

    Last year the opening game Cowboys/Giants was on a Wednesday night which was really an odd night. Had it been Thursday night, it too would have had at least 25 million perhaps more.

    Also with the game involving Denver, it brought in more viewers from the west who don’t find the game on too late. In the east, the game didn’t end until like 1 AM.

    Thursday night seems to be a good night to start the season but if the NFL continues to include teams from the east who are located in densly populated areas, games need to start earlier in the evening.

  52. bobzilla1001 says: Sep 7, 2013 10:21 AM

    Before any head coach pokes fun at a rival QB, I suggest that coach go back and take a look at what his own QB did against basically the same team in last year’s season opener. If Tomlin did, in fact, twitter those remarks, that would make him just as idiotic as you … If there’s one team that doesn’t need to provide future opponents with bulletin board material, it’s Tomlin’s.

  53. Nofoolnodrool says: Sep 7, 2013 12:15 PM

    Before any head coach pokes fun at a rival QB, I suggest that coach go back and take a look at what his own QB did against basically the same team in last year’s season opener. If Tomlin did, in fact, twitter those remarks, that would make him just as idiotic as you … If there’s one team that doesn’t need to provide future opponents with bulletin board material, it’s Tomlin’s.

    Hey grumpy, think you might want to take a deep breath…..there relax and lighten up. Life is hard enough don’t take yourself so seriously. Tomlin s not allowed to have fun if in fact he actually did twitter lol? Please the PC police are everywhere…get a life grumpy besides bashing Ben and Tomlin.

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