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Early-season ratings decline continues for NFL

ORCHARD PARK, NY - SEPTEMBER 15:  Marquise Goodwin #88 of the Buffalo Bills celebrates during the first half against the New York Jets at New Era Field on September 15, 2016 in Orchard Park, New York.  (Photo by Tom Szczerbowski/Getty Images) Getty Images

The statement from the NFL regarding the audience that watched the first Thursday Night Football game of the season creates the impression the glass is more than half full. The reality is that, however full the glass may be, it has sprung a leak.

The Jets-Bills game televised nationally by CBS and NFL Network generated a rating of 9.5 with a share of 18. The NFL trumpets those numbers as an increase of more than 20 percent over the average rating of 7.9 for each of last year’s Thursday Night Football games, several of which were televised by NFL Network only.

But before cracking open the champagne, consider this nugget buried in the release: Last year’s season-opening Thursday Night Football contest between the Broncos and Chiefs generated a 12.9 rating and a 24 share. Apples to apples, that’s a decline of more than 25 percent.

The addition of Twitter doesn’t move the needle all that much, with an added average audience of 243,000. As noted by Chris LaPlaca of ESPN, Monday night’s Steelers-Washington game had an average of 307,000 streams and the Rams-49ers game had 309,000 — even though ESPN (unlike Twitter) wasn’t streaming its games on phones.

In Week One, the ratings for Monday night’s games declined in comparison to 2015, as did the ratings for the opening night of the season and the first Sunday night game of the year.

It’s still too early to make broad conclusions or to proclaim the existence of trends. But the NFL surely must be troubled by the size of the TV audience relative to 2015, especially with Thursday night’s game involving one of the two New York teams. If the drop continues, the NFL will need to throw some of its billions at the problem before the billions begin to evaporate.

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90 Responses to “Early-season ratings decline continues for NFL”
  1. ReligionIsForIdiots says: Sep 17, 2016 10:05 PM

    Bills and Jets have been awful for years. Denver had Manning last year and the Chiefs were coming off a colossal playoff meltdown.

  2. skol4life says: Sep 17, 2016 10:09 PM

    Politics instilled in to the NFL is the decline. The liberals ruin everything pure and good.

  3. 101cmb1502 says: Sep 17, 2016 10:10 PM

    I wouldn’t say apples to apples. The Broncos game had Peyton Manning, where people were trying to see if he was done physically.

  4. jasondc7 says: Sep 17, 2016 10:11 PM

    NFL should abandon Thursday nights, IMO. Games and draft are better enjoyed on weekends when more people are off work to enjoy.

  5. jsm08 says: Sep 17, 2016 10:12 PM

    If the ratings decline continue you’ll see a stop to the anthem protests.

  6. unkleruckus says: Sep 17, 2016 10:14 PM

    Seems like you’re not comparing apples to apples. The first Thursday night game of this season was Panthers vs. Broncos, not a couple of mediocre teams from NY that haven’t won anything in years. How did last years opening numbers compare to Panthers/Broncos?

  7. defscottyb says: Sep 17, 2016 10:15 PM

    Gotta love all the pc liberal wackos

  8. sylvester000001 says: Sep 17, 2016 10:18 PM

    It’s unfortunate that people aren’t going to believe the anthem posts on this thread, but in all absolute honesty, it’s true.

    The anthem thing is backfiring because it is way overdone yet keeps going and going.

    It makes the players unlikeable and no one seems to understand this. It’s that simple.

  9. cowboylover says: Sep 17, 2016 10:20 PM

    Anthem tomfoolery is irritating the masses.

  10. footballfan58 says: Sep 17, 2016 10:22 PM

    Well, for me, I’ve just plain old lost the burning desire to watch NFL football. I dumped Sunday Ticket. I don’t spend any money on any NFL brand clothing. I stopped going to the games because of the price of tickets, parking, food, etc. I do watch my team when they play, but I don’t give the TV my full attention. I’ve got only one eye on the game while I do laundry, cook supper or do housework.

    While I support everyone’s right to protest, they can support my right to lose interest in watching them doing something that has absolutely no productive effect on the social injustices they claim is happening. Good for you!

    I don’t have to threaten to stop watching the NFL. I am already there.

  11. charger383 says: Sep 17, 2016 10:27 PM

    Enjoying college football tonight, Sunday afternoon I am not watching NFL instead I am helping with Adopt A Highway. We picked Sunday afternoon for a reason

  12. pastabelly says: Sep 17, 2016 10:27 PM

    Fans want to see Roger Goodell, not Tom Brady. Right?

  13. Karmi says: Sep 17, 2016 10:28 PM

    I’ve been writing the NFL TV game advertisers .. refusing to buy any more of their products.

  14. vuudu says: Sep 17, 2016 10:28 PM

    One thing I can give the NFL is that they know how to use statistics to their advantage as all good researchers do.

  15. wyrdawg says: Sep 17, 2016 10:32 PM

    Maybe make the game an hour earlier? You’re already killing me with the Sunday Night Football, leading into the Monday Night Football MARATHON.

  16. Matt from San Diego says: Sep 17, 2016 10:32 PM

    I would be interested to see if its just NFL, or if it is a trend against linear entertainment and television in general.

    People are so glued to their phones and interacting with each other, its a miracle as many people have the patience to sit down and watch an entire game as it is.

    We don’t need em.

    Play ball.

  17. liberalsruineverything says: Sep 17, 2016 10:35 PM

    The liberals ruin everything pure and good Liberals don’t run or ruin anything, silly. If you really think about, there wouldn’t be so much punting on 4th down in football if liberals ran the NFL and there would be way more attempted 2 point conversions. Naw, liberals are not the problem.

  18. 52crabcakes says: Sep 17, 2016 10:38 PM

    hahhahaha hahahahha hahahahaha

  19. braceyourselffor12 says: Sep 17, 2016 10:41 PM

    skol4life says:
    Sep 17, 2016 10:09 PM

    Politics instilled in to the NFL is the decline. The liberals ruin everything pure and good

    ——————————————————–

    Yeah like the 40 hour work week, clean water/air, safety standards, scientific and intellectual advancement, civil rights. If it wasn’t for the knuckle dragging mouth breathers on the right this country wouldn’t be behind the rest of the developed world.

  20. unoduotres says: Sep 17, 2016 10:45 PM

    I wonder what were the ratings for the recent Lauer – Goodwell interview.

    I surmise that the ratings were off the chart as the whole world (including China) must have come to a complete stop to hear Roger’s flowery dissertation on the greatness and integrity of the NFL.

  21. deneb1973 says: Sep 17, 2016 10:45 PM

    Make the early season irrelevant and suspend many of he most talented players and you have a Goodell start. When will the owners learn that they have poisoned the game with an arrogant bully? They paid Goodell to destroy the game!

  22. backintheday99 says: Sep 17, 2016 10:47 PM

    Concussions are part of it. Protests might be a very minor part of it but the reality is kids today do not live for the idiot box like previous generations.

    It’s only going to get worse. I have 4 kids and not one of them has watched anything on TV since they were in pre-school. They watch movies from time to time.

    Collectively they equal 63 years of age. Subtract 20 (pre-school ages) and you have 43 years of NO TV.

    Cable will die, revenue will change and the NFL’s money will not necessarily dry up but it will be less. Alot less.

    The NFL, I’m sure, is fully aware of this.

  23. backintheday99 says: Sep 17, 2016 10:49 PM

    PS

    I sound like a moron “It’s only going to get worse”….not because this generation is not watching TV but for the NFL trying to make money.

  24. sylvester000001 says: Sep 17, 2016 10:53 PM

    You can’t be a multi millionaire before age thirty through of all things entertainment, and in a country that allows you to do so to just to turn around and disrespect the flag, and here’s the key: even if disrespect is not your motivation, that’s what you’re doing anyway be it unintentionally. You lose your audience to your cause.

    The players and media members who like to moonlight as social just warriors need to start understanding this basic fact. They also need to understand that understanding and admitting this fact does not mean you are giving up or disrespecting the issue. It doesn’t mean you lost on your issue. This is not the competition you want. And constantly doubling down on it makes it worse. You need to understand this.

    I’m not saying if that is right or if it is wrong. It’s the way it is though. And the more and more this is less and less understood, the more unwatchable these players become.

    In it’s most basic form, you can’t respect anyone who has made themselves into a multimillionaire because of the flag, and then protest. It makes you unlikeable to the rest of us who will never be able to do that, and being unlikeable makes you unwatchable.

    Therefore, the ratings decline.

  25. tommytd says: Sep 17, 2016 10:57 PM

    Well, for me, I’ve just plain old lost the burning desire to watch NFL football. I dumped Sunday Ticket. I don’t spend any money on any NFL brand clothing. I stopped going to the games because of the price of tickets, parking, food, etc. I do watch my team when they play, but I don’t give the TV my full attention. I’ve got only one eye on the game while I do laundry, cook supper or do housework.

    While I support everyone’s right to protest, they can support my right to lose interest in watching them doing something that has absolutely no productive effect on the social injustices they claim is happening. Good for you!

    I don’t have to threaten to stop watching the NFL. I am already there.

    ********************************************
    With my group, the games have been relegated to “background noise” and I no longer watch with any of the intensity of past years –

  26. coltsreign says: Sep 17, 2016 10:57 PM

    So it just isn’t me? For some reason I’m just not into the games as I was last year. Maybe it’s because the NFL is trying too hard to have an omniscient presence in our lives with all these marketing deals and stuff.

    It use to be that Football was a weekend thing where you and your friends and family would gather around and root for the teams but now it seems like no one cares anymore as its on Monday and Thursday. Does anyone feel the same?

  27. skol4life says: Sep 17, 2016 10:58 PM

    liberalsruineverything says:
    Sep 17, 2016 10:35 PM
    The liberals ruin everything pure and good Liberals don’t run or ruin anything, silly. If you really think about, there wouldn’t be so much punting on 4th down in football if liberals ran the NFL and there would be way more attempted 2 point conversions. Naw, liberals are not the problem.
    ———–
    Exhibit A ^ thanks for proving my point

  28. trevor123698 says: Sep 17, 2016 11:05 PM

    Im thinking people realize how rigged it all is

  29. briang123 says: Sep 17, 2016 11:12 PM

    The ratings would be worse if it weren’t for the national anthem protests. On Monday night, the players should carry Hillary Clinton signs on the field so that people will understand what the criminal Trump will do to this country if he steals the election. No Wayne can win legitimately. No one I know is voting for him.

  30. bak2bak2bakhaters says: Sep 17, 2016 11:22 PM

    It’s the game/the teams, some pull mass ratings, some just don’t, WE DO!!!BRONCOS COUNTRY

  31. jasons81 says: Sep 17, 2016 11:24 PM

    @coltsreign

    I agree. For me I have the following list of items that make me just not care about it anymore:

    -Excessive Draftkings and Fanduel commercials
    -Goodell’s inconsistent application of punishment
    -Goodell’s witchhunt projects
    -Goodell in general
    -The National Anthem protests
    -Players like Greg Hardy
    -The Thursday games (dilute the product)
    -The fact it’s always the same 6 teams on primetime (like Cowboys)
    -The inconsistency in officiating
    -Confusing rules
    -Have I mentioned Goodell?
    -The fact that every year they feel compelled to change stuff (like kickoff)
    -The way teams extort tax dollars for stadiums (this is my biggest source of frustration)
    -Many other things, that’s just what I can think of offhand

    Now I still have my season tickets and go to every home game but the passion isn’t there anymore. I used to get Sunday Ticket and watch football all day on Sunday but I honestly don’t watch more than my team, and don’t even watch that much of their away games. And I do not spend any money at the games anymore… that’s my compromise with myself when it comes to keeping my PSLs.

    It’s not the same game it was 10 years ago, they’ve sold their soul to the devil to gain market share but the oversaturation will be their downfall.

    I blame Goodell.

  32. itsmarcwithac says: Sep 17, 2016 11:32 PM

    put 2 good teams on TNF and see what the ratings do…

  33. thegreatgabbert says: Sep 17, 2016 11:41 PM

    Soon the only spectators will be bored liberals who only tune in for the national anthem to see what form the protest takes that week.

  34. matterson20 says: Sep 17, 2016 11:49 PM

    Welcome to Goodell’s NFL.

  35. izzepomme says: Sep 17, 2016 11:57 PM

    The NFL disrespects me and my country. I cancelled Sunday Ticket and donated the money to the Dallas Fund for the murdered police officers that they refuse to honor based on a bogus uniform excuse. Could not be happier.

  36. whispersd says: Sep 18, 2016 12:07 AM

    Must be easy to be a right wingnut. Any bad news is the fault of liberals. Any good news is because conservatives are so wonderful.

  37. whispersd says: Sep 18, 2016 12:13 AM

    Seems like you’re not comparing apples to apples. The first Thursday night game of this season was Panthers vs. Broncos, not a couple of mediocre teams from NY that haven’t won anything in years.

    The first Thursday night game last year was Pats vs. Steelers. Chiefs vs. Broncos was the Week 2 game – another divisional matchup, and from markets much smaller than New York City.

    But, as others have noted, Peyton Manning brings in viewers a lot more than Tyrod Taylor and Ryan Fitzpatrick do.

  38. rjov says: Sep 18, 2016 12:18 AM

    Think. A lot of people stopped paying for cable. Over the air I get all televised games. Monday night is ESPN, that’s cable, the only game I can’t get.

  39. cadreamer1969 says: Sep 18, 2016 12:29 AM

    I agree about losing interest. I started hating it when they stopped the flow so much for commercials and replays. Guess the NFL had to appease the gamblers. I got rid of cable so I wouldn’t be supporting ESPN or NFL Network. With so many people talking it was just annoying noise.

  40. Damidwesterner says: Sep 18, 2016 12:33 AM

    This isn’t even a surprise. Both teams have sucked for years. Nobody really wants to see those sucky teams unless you are from New York. The rest of us would rather watch the college game. Wasn’t Houston playing somebody Thursday night as well?

    The NFL doesn’t need to throw billions to fix this problem. What they need to do is put two playoff teams from the previous year together. Better yet, a rematch.

  41. ogawdwhereami says: Sep 18, 2016 12:40 AM

    I think baseball is making a comeback.

  42. eoyguy says: Sep 18, 2016 12:52 AM

    I haven’t watched a game in years. I can follow the scores, I can read the summary and look at the stats, and don’t have to sit through endless commercials, banal commentary or repeated slo-mo replays of a 2 yard run. What more do I need? Thats 3 hours where I can be doing something worthwhile other than swilling beer and eating chips, or worrying about fantasy stats.

  43. jackfan2 says: Sep 18, 2016 12:59 AM

    The greatest QB who ever lived played in last year’s game. He’s. now retired. What did you expect? The NFL and many of the announcers whose paychecks depend on the NFL’s success have been worried about this for some time. Stories have speculated about what might happen when thmost popular player ever left the game. All of which. explains a lot of the off–putting hype surrounding some pretty mediocre players. When someone comes along who plays with the same sustained brilliance – not just the occassionagreat game, knowledgeable fans will be back.

  44. bark81 says: Sep 18, 2016 1:39 AM

    For decades the NFL and American patriotism are almost one in the same. Tens of millions of Americans watch football every (Saturday( Sunday, Monday and Thursday. We love the national anthem being sung before every game. We love that the military brings out the flags at the middle of the field before every game. We love the jets/helicopters that fly over the stadium aftter the anthem is sung. We love that it’s rough. We love that it’s the best of the best out there. We love that there is a winner and a loser. Now, out in the forefront we are watching the NFL smack in the middle of politics. And the NFL appeares to be caving and people are pissed. With Colin Kaepernick it’s “freedom of speech”. With Avery Williams it’s a “uniform violation” and he’ll be fined for wearing his special 9/11 tribute cleats. So the NFL can’t look the other way on 9/11?? I believe this to be the biggest reason (by far) for the ratings drop. The liberal media hates the NFL and football in general. They hate that we all come together on a Sunday and love seeing our flag, hearing our anthem and watching our teams fight it out for 4 Qtrs. So what do liberals do best? Destroy things. Kaepernick should have gotten about 10 seconds of airtime for his preseason antics. The liberal media has it out there 24/7. And the NFL is caving. People are angry about it. Advice to the NFL, suck it up and don’t cave or this is just the beginning of the ratings drop.

  45. bradwins says: Sep 18, 2016 2:11 AM

    Good, hopefully they fire the clown commissioner.

  46. kelsey59 says: Sep 18, 2016 2:13 AM

    It is simple, the NFL has become a huge snooze feast. Who really wants to spend 3 hours of their life looking at refs. standing around waiting for a ruling on every play?

  47. packmanfan says: Sep 18, 2016 2:53 AM

    Just because you are not happy with players not standing for the anthem doesn’t mean that everyone who isn’t watching is the reason why the ratings are down.
    News flash: The world does not revolve around you.
    As others have pointed out: Jets and Bills are terrible and the Broncs. no longer have a HOF legendary veteran QB playing for them anymore.
    So there could be tons of reasons other than players protesting.
    The one and only way to find out for sure for the ratings drop is to take a survey of each and every fan why they haven’t watched any of these games mentioned.
    Other than that, the anthem protests is just speculation which is nothing but BS.
    I won’t be surprised if I get more thumbs down than up seeing how the majority refuse to understand and empathize with blacks getting murdered by cops. They would rather have the players be silent on a subject that matters to them and are doing what they can to bring attention to it. If you can’t empathize with that, then you must be a racist and shame on you.

  48. patfic15 says: Sep 18, 2016 2:56 AM

    It was already hard to relate to millionaires as it were. It got much harder over the last month.

  49. tom48212 says: Sep 18, 2016 3:57 AM

    Forgive me but we the people don’t care about NY and NY teams. I mean where do you get off thinking they are a must watch, must hear about, must control the news area? Hell with NY.

  50. anonymousnevermindfishdeath says: Sep 18, 2016 4:05 AM

    Good job Rodge! – Eliminate the kick off return, it’ll sink lower.

  51. gofor2with3pointlead says: Sep 18, 2016 5:18 AM

    African American players drawing attention to the fact that there is inequity in this country is no more responsible for the NFL’s low ratings than people who think so are for setting the curve on the cumulative I.Q. of humanity. But what do I know? I’m a liberal libertarian.

  52. pphins4life12 says: Sep 18, 2016 6:07 AM

    Free speech is always good until we hear something we dont agree with

  53. gwhite13 says: Sep 18, 2016 6:27 AM

    The majority of people see thru the commissioners attempts at heavy handed punishment. Yes, he did see the Ray Rice elevator film, and deflategate was an attempt at retribution alone.. They may try to blow smoke in our eyes, but we can see. Stay in the background and the decline in ratings may stop.

  54. redclaw1314 says: Sep 18, 2016 6:38 AM

    Last year the faces of the league were players like Tom Brady and Peyton Manning—this year Colin Kaepernick and Brandon Marshall. Is it any wonder that ratings are down?

  55. switchwitch59 says: Sep 18, 2016 6:51 AM

    The Sunday night numbers are surprising, one would have thought Pats/Cards would have unusually high numbers. According to all the Patriots/Brady bashers on this site, the whole world has been waiting with baited breath to see the Brady-less Patriots get trounced by someone, anyone. I mean, count the number of trolls on this site that call them “cheaters” and claim Brady “got what he deserved”, you would think they’d all be glued to their TV sets on Sunday, salivating over the idea the Patriots would lose. What happened to them? I guess they really are about 5 trolls with multiple screen names.

  56. followme2boston says: Sep 18, 2016 6:53 AM

    I think this is more a function of a change in TV viewing patterns than anything else.

  57. jstamper3377 says: Sep 18, 2016 7:04 AM

    Politics instilled in to the NFL is the decline. The liberals ruin everything pure and good

    ——————————————————–

    Yeah like the 40 hour work week, clean water/air, safety standards, scientific and intellectual advancement, civil rights. If it wasn’t for the knuckle dragging mouth breathers on the right this country wouldn’t be behind the rest of the developed world.

    ————————————————————————-

    I don’t know if football is ruined or not but I know that people on both extremes (left and right), who treat politics like a game where you either win or lose and everything is black or white, are ruining our country. This is why not thing gets done.

  58. hunter300win says: Sep 18, 2016 7:43 AM

    braceyourselffor12 says:
    Sep 17, 2016 10:41 PM
    skol4life says:
    Sep 17, 2016 10:09 PM

    Politics instilled in to the NFL is the decline. The liberals ruin everything pure and good

    ——————————————————–

    Yeah like the 40 hour work week, clean water/air, safety standards, scientific and intellectual advancement, civil rights. If it wasn’t for the knuckle dragging mouth breathers on the right this country wouldn’t be behind the rest of the developed world.

    So by “behind the rest of the developed world” do you mean that our economy hasn’t totally crashed yet?

  59. jkossrt says: Sep 18, 2016 7:48 AM

    It’s football burnout. There is just too much NFL on tv. Used to be you would get excited about Sunday because your team was playing. Now you have Sunday afternoon, Sunday night, Monday night, Thursday night and come the end of the season some Saturday afternoon and evening games. The NFL is just overexposing themselves. And the stupid players aren’t helping build ratings.

  60. freedomofspeechyesway says: Sep 18, 2016 7:48 AM

    People on the coasts will never understand how this country actually feels, right or wrong.

  61. cardinealsfan20 says: Sep 18, 2016 7:50 AM

    Anyone who believes that lower lower ratings are a result of player statements is a moron. They are the same people who believe that the protests are against the flag, as if a flag is capable of being protested against.

    Ratings are down because of bad match ups and cord cutting. Don’t try to read some weirdo imagined backlash into it.

  62. cobrala2 says: Sep 18, 2016 7:54 AM

    What if Rog damaged the shield?

  63. 2manyconcussions says: Sep 18, 2016 8:01 AM

    Went to turn on a football game and got a protest instead. Realized I must be on the wrong station, I turned off the “game.”

  64. dtroxallday says: Sep 18, 2016 8:02 AM

    “It’s still too early to make broad conclusions…” yet I’ll still make my headline read as such.

  65. ncarmchairqb says: Sep 18, 2016 8:04 AM

    looks like the NFL has a serious issue on its hands with the protesting. Not at all shocked viewership is down.

  66. gschatman says: Sep 18, 2016 8:05 AM

    America, stolen from Native Americans, built for free by African Americans, Chinese Laborers, and more recently every where I look it is being built by people from Mexico who they want sent back. The problem is not Tv or football. BTW, I never did get my 40 acres and a mule. Wake the hell up people.

  67. xinamic says: Sep 18, 2016 8:07 AM

    I’m sure the NFL’s marketing people realize most people don’t have or are getting rid of cable. And most fans over the age of 40 were able to watch good quality football (Seen the last 2 Super bowls?) That leaves friends and extended family of players and team/media staff as your base audience. The first common sense move should be to put all the games back on network TV. Next they need to simplify the schedule and rules. Bottom line is, well, their bottom line. Unless they just want a glorified Golf Network … with no Tiger.

  68. rob1729 says: Sep 18, 2016 8:15 AM

    Roger Goodell is turning into Don King of the 1990s. Back in the 1990s, heavyweight boxing could do no wrong. So King bastardized the product by creating his own rules that he lived by and flaunting that fact to the public. After a while fans got tired out it and lost interest in the product.

    I think the NFL has a Roger Goodell problem. He makes up the rules as he goes along and is arrogant enough to flaunt it. He is ruining the integrity of the League. It soon will have less credibility than either the WBA or WBO back circa 2001.

  69. dbarnes67 says: Sep 18, 2016 8:22 AM

    Its the silly pajamas they wear on Thursdays.

  70. truevision21 says: Sep 18, 2016 8:34 AM

    I think all of the good players should decide not to play until this issue is resolved……

  71. patriotfaningeorgia says: Sep 18, 2016 8:37 AM

    If I see another new instance of disrespecting our flag and the national anthem, I too will be exercising my right to boycott the NFL. This is already the season of intense politics due to the election, and football was a great temporary distraction from all the nastiness.

  72. kingpel says: Sep 18, 2016 8:46 AM

    All I want to do is hear Xs and Os discussed in the pregame show and watch football. I dont know what this TMZ drama filled garbage I’ve been watching lately but its getting worse every year. Its time to just scale everything back. Shorter pregames. Less games. The NFL is blowing it in the expanded spotlight.

  73. dmca12 says: Sep 18, 2016 9:03 AM

    Ratings cannot keep going up. At some point there is saturation and a drop off. What is to be looked at though is why now? I think a few oreasons. First, college football’s opening was awesome and stolen the show. For some reason college football just seems to have grabbed the stage this year. Next, not a lot of compelling match ups week one. The biggest one, den-car, drew well. Should be better this week with some rivalry games on. Next, too much. Three days a week is too much. I have a job and a family, as do most Americans. Keep football to Sunday and Monday. The games don’t have the event feel to them. Next, I think people are sick of the nfl money machine. They don’t care about fans only our wallets. I still cannot get how billionaire owners think the public should help fund their stadiums. Do they share their profits with the tax payers? Next Roger. Enough said there. He’s seat will get hot if business tanks. Last, the players. This anthem protest thing is a pr nightmare. I respect their right to protest but it’s going to continue to have a pr backlash.

  74. barturkarl says: Sep 18, 2016 9:10 AM

    I live in NY and would not watch a Bills vs. Jets game, so no wonder. As usual NFL is twisting truth. Leadership seems to suffer from concussions, could not understand basic elementary school physics either. Even hundred science professors could not help them explaining that any football would deflate when cooled down, same as car tires.

  75. bondlake says: Sep 18, 2016 9:26 AM

    Speaking for myself and several friends, the games have become boring. Too many commercials, play reviews, flags (we call it the National Flag League), over exposure (are two Monday night games really necessary?) and social causes (i.e., breast cancer awareness month) detract from why we want to watch the games. Yes, our viewing is down also and life is going on just fine.

  76. thegonz13 says: Sep 18, 2016 9:36 AM

    They’re putting the Bills and the Jets, two teams that haven’t won jack in quite some time, in prime time. What the hell did they expect?????

  77. hescominsoon says: Sep 18, 2016 9:49 AM

    As long as the owners allow their employees to do disrespectful things on company time folks will continue to tune out the company that is the NFL.

  78. ocgunslinger says: Sep 18, 2016 11:29 AM

    I only watch one team play now. My son-in-law showed me a European gambling web site that broadcasts not just the NFL but all sporting events FREE. It is the broadcast from cable or TV. I watch my team and that is it. Goodell may think he is the “Answer” but he is not close to Iverson. Taking great players like Brady off the field does not increase viewership and he should quit trying to influcence the outcome of games and seasons.

  79. deepwater805 says: Sep 18, 2016 11:47 AM

    The NFL has Colin Kaepernick to thank for this decline. As the toxic infection of his misguided rebellion spreads to other rich angry young men, who refuse to stand for the anthem of the country that gave them the opportunity to become wealthy, then so too will the growth of patriotic Americans who are now leaving the NFL by the tens of thousands. Once the TV networks feel the economic pinch caused by this hypocrisy from certain NFL players, then the NFL will see the billions it gets from television rights begin to shrink. Once this starts then the massive salaries paid to undeserving players like Kaepernick will begin to shrink as well. I wonder how many of these players stay disrespectful once their paychecks are affected?

  80. southbison says: Sep 18, 2016 12:05 PM

    The flag and anthem represent the USA. Lots of stuff not right in this county and we should work to correct the ills and not tear down the county and disrespect it. The players want to protest at the game so they get the most attention and the NFL supports them. I however do not. I will still get scores online but this afternoon going to take the boat out and go around the lake a few times. Monday night the eagles protesting will not have my attention as I will not have the game on.

  81. whatevnfl says: Sep 18, 2016 12:08 PM

    Roger Goodell and Troy Vincent are ruining football.

  82. laserw says: Sep 18, 2016 12:15 PM

    Twit is useless and is contributing to the decline of our English language and writing skills.

    Shun twit.

    Retwits are simply vomit of the idiot class.

  83. zeke2517 says: Sep 18, 2016 12:26 PM

    “Politics instilled in to the NFL is the decline. The liberals ruin everything pure and good.”

    To paraphrase Jeff Foxworthy, if you blame “the liberals” for something as ridiculous as NFL ratings, you might be a moron.

  84. zeke2517 says: Sep 18, 2016 12:29 PM

    “Twit is useless and is contributing to the decline of our English language and writing skills.

    Shun twit.

    Retwits are simply vomit of the idiot class.”

    It’s hard to fully encapsulate the level of sheer dumb contained in your comment.

  85. KenC says: Sep 18, 2016 1:17 PM

    Jets-Bills, that’s two NY state teams from one of the weakest divisions in football dominated by the Patriots. According to 538, it’s the 4th worst divisional rivalry since the merger, with the Jets the 6th losingest, and the Bills the 10th worst in that timespan. Broncos and Chiefs were predicted to be playoff teams.

  86. lambeaudungbarn says: Sep 18, 2016 1:50 PM

    In 1985 the AVERAGE NFL ticket price was approx. $16.00
    In 2014 the AVERAGE NFL ticket price was approx. $90.00

    Hey NFL, learn the hard lesson Boxing did, when you raise the prices to make single season multimillionaires out of
    players people will quit going to games, when they quit going to games they lose interest and stop watching on TV..
    Boxing still hasn’t recovered from the 1980s!

  87. keywestjim says: Sep 18, 2016 1:55 PM

    I have opted out of watching NFL games until players protesting during games cease. The NFL can make the players cease protesting or the NFL can fine or suspend players. The players can protest all they want when not working in the official capacity for the NFL. I used to watch NFL to get away from reality for a few hours. I’ll turn on the news when I have the need to hear about protesters or read about it online. Soon I will go after the advertisers for supporting partisan politics during games. I have plenty of disposable income that will not go to those advertisers. No business wants to lose a customer.

  88. thermalito says: Sep 19, 2016 11:19 AM

    Happy to say my second week of boycotting all NFL games went quite well. Did not watch a single game for the second straight week and have a nice relaxing day with my family. I’m pretty much checked out of the NFL at this point. I have better things to do than be insulted by privileged jerks and their obnoxious political views. They are all walking contradictions of their claims. The NFL hates cops and hates our flag unless they can figure out some way to profit from it. I am done with the NFL permanently.

  89. jackfan2 says: Sep 19, 2016 12:30 PM

    Besides the absence of the great and always entertaining Peyton Manning for me it’s pretty simple. If you wear a Superman shirt I don’t care how good you are at your job I don’t want to know you. It’s not a racial thing or a cultural thing or a political thing. I feel the same way about Aaron Rodgers. I just don’t like watching arrogant fools who constantly congratulate themselves prancing around the

  90. jjackwagon says: Sep 19, 2016 5:14 PM

    Watching 20-something millionaires protest about how they are being oppressed somehow rings hollow for most Americans.

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