Skip to content

ESPN avoids ratings disaster on Monday night

Getty Images

The bad news is that the ratings for Monday night’s Colts-Jets game were really bad. The good news is they could have been worse.

Not much worse, but worse.

Via SportsBusiness Daily, the 6.0 overnight rating narrowly beat the all-time low from late September, when a game between the Falcons and Saints that went against a presidential debate generated a 5.7 rating.

It was still the lowest Monday Night Football, and it reflected a 40-percent reduction from Cowboys-Washington a year ago in Week 13.

That should change next week, when the Patriots host the Ravens. Also, the final MNF game of the year, in Week 16, features the Cowboys hosting the Lions.

Permalink 55 Comments Feed for comments Latest Stories in: Home, Indianapolis Colts, New York Jets, Rumor Mill
55 Responses to “ESPN avoids ratings disaster on Monday night”
  1. feckyerlife says: Dec 6, 2016 1:08 PM

    NFL if they were smarter, they would also flex the monday night games. Monday games are usually bad, next weeks is only the 2nd good one of the season

  2. bigbobbysue says: Dec 6, 2016 1:08 PM

    I am sorry but………………….my life is way too short to watch those two teams play each other.

  3. rodgersrodgersheisking says: Dec 6, 2016 1:09 PM

    This year I’ve stopped watching football. I just can’t be bothered to see games being decided by officials, and have to sit through 2 hours of ads to watch 1 hour of football. I don’t know what specifically drove me to not care anymore, but I really don’t.

  4. nwsuccess says: Dec 6, 2016 1:11 PM

    Supply and demand. Nobody is going to spend their time watching a garbage game.

    There is little you can do to know what these team’s records will be in advance of the season, but I couldn’t watch the game last night after the first quarter. Just bad.

  5. jimmyjohns01 says: Dec 6, 2016 1:11 PM

    While numerically 6.0 is higher than 5.7, the 5.7 was during the same time as a presidential debate. I’m sure if there’s a way to adjust for that, the 6.0 is probably a 3.0.

  6. tajuara says: Dec 6, 2016 1:13 PM

    The game was a blowout. 1:02 left in the third quarter, the Jets punted the ball and BSPN had the decency to send to a long commercial break, seriously? Then Roger is asking in his ivory tower: why are ratings down?

  7. Frazier28/7 says: Dec 6, 2016 1:15 PM

    get ready to see a lot if bad los angeles rams teams on monday night, thursday night football.

  8. brendafortheboyz says: Dec 6, 2016 1:18 PM

    The Cowboys always seem to garner high ratings, whether our season is good, average, or a disaster. Even the first 4 games of last season, we were ranked the highest in 3 out of 4, beating out the season 1 game, of Pats vs. Steelers. Am glad PFT is following the ratings this year, as I don’t remember if they did last year……

  9. kcchefs58 says: Dec 6, 2016 1:19 PM

    I fixed the title: “ESPN avoids credible journalism every night”

  10. cafetero1075 says: Dec 6, 2016 1:20 PM

    They haven’t put a good Monday night game in 15 years. Back in the 80’s and 90’s the best games were on Monday night. Sunday night gets the good one.

  11. weepingjebus says: Dec 6, 2016 1:20 PM

    Normally avoid BSPN but I could not look away. It was oddly compelling watching it — not only did the Jets quit but so did the fans and even the announcers. Nobody was even angry about it, it was more like a bunch of people who just decided to start thinking about other stuff when they should have been focused on football. Afterwards the sports center guy thanked viewers for sticking around long enough to see the post game. It was surreal.

  12. stillers213 says: Dec 6, 2016 1:22 PM

    ESPN is a disaster. Disaster is what disaster does. (or something like that)

  13. abninf says: Dec 6, 2016 1:22 PM

    The Browns would have destroyed the Jets last night. They were so horrible it was actually comical.

  14. 2016nfcnorthchampiondetroitlions says: Dec 6, 2016 1:23 PM

    MNF week 16 will be even worse. Cowboys will rest their starters and the Lions will already have the NFC North locked up, beating the Bears and Giants while the Packers lose to Seattle this week.

  15. clbrwns says: Dec 6, 2016 1:24 PM

    I use to watch every minute of every game I could on TV. Now I start watching something/anything else on Thursday or Monday night and bounce over to see the game in the first quarter and usually don’t go back. With products like Red Zone and NFL network replaying games in shorter fashion each week there is no need to spend almost 3.5 hours watching a bad game.

    Time to end Thursday night football. It’s just to much. I remember when Monday Night Football was special. It was a big event each week regardless of who was playing. No flex games in those days.

  16. fredsingleton says: Dec 6, 2016 1:25 PM

    It’s almost embarrassing if you actually tune in to see this game. The only excuse I could see is if you’re a fan of the Colts/Jets or fantasy football related.

    I’m sure people have better things to do with their lives. I hope.

  17. stiffarm13 says: Dec 6, 2016 1:26 PM

    So does flipping through the channels and stopping at the game for a minute count ? Nobody could have watched more than a minute or two of that game …. the nfl is kidding themselves on that rating number. … kind of like owebama’s unemployment numbers. …a hoax

  18. factschecker says: Dec 6, 2016 1:26 PM

    rodgersrodgersheisking says:
    Dec 6, 2016 1:09 PM
    This year I’ve stopped watching football. I just can’t be bothered to see games being decided by officials, and have to sit through 2 hours of ads to watch 1 hour of football. I don’t know what specifically drove me to not care anymore, but I really don’t.
    Me too. I am watching my teams games but that’s about it. And even when I’m watching my team play I’m not nearly as engrossed like the fanatic that I was for the past 25 years. I’m not sure I’m happy or sad that football no longer drives my passion?

    My fanaticism has fallen and it can’t get up.

  19. ricko1112 says: Dec 6, 2016 1:37 PM

    BSPN is trash! Worldwide Leader in lies, innuendo, sabotage!

  20. bubbahotepp says: Dec 6, 2016 1:38 PM

    Espn has been borderline with me for quite some time, beginning back when the comedians outnumbered actual sports commentators. But the final straw was when they replaced Tom Jackson with Herm Edwards. It was at that moment that I knew it was over.

  21. ditkainyourbutkus says: Dec 6, 2016 1:42 PM

    I looked at the matchup, laughed, and didn’t even consider turning on the tv

  22. sbchampsagain says: Dec 6, 2016 1:46 PM

    The terrible Thursday Night Football games have made me sick of bad football games by Monday.

  23. lionhunter909 says: Dec 6, 2016 1:48 PM

    Three reason the MNF ratings suck:
    1. terrible announcers, the guy who replaced Mike Tirico is awful, and Gruden is just annoying….
    2. ESPN is a cable network and not everybody has, or is willing to pay for cable.
    3. often lousy matchups…..duh!

    I personally don’t have cable or satellite TV and can’t watch from home. If it’s a good game I’ll go to a sports bar and watch on TV but it’s got to be a decent matchup.

    NFL needs to get a clue…….

  24. xpensivewinos says: Dec 6, 2016 1:50 PM

    This year I’ve stopped watching football. I just can’t be bothered to see games being decided by officials, and have to sit through 2 hours of ads to watch 1 hour of football. I don’t know what specifically drove me to not care anymore, but I really don’t.

    I’m with ya. My interest has waned considerably as well and I can’t quite put my finger on one specific reason why. I’m still watching, but not as much and with zero of the passion I used to have…..

  25. bobthebillsfan says: Dec 6, 2016 1:51 PM

    I wonder how the ratings work. I stopped watching at half time. Do the ratings sample across the entire time slot or just at the start?

  26. str82dvd says: Dec 6, 2016 1:52 PM

    ESPN went the SJW route at the expense of quality. It’s like the sports wing of the DNC

  27. leatherface2012 says: Dec 6, 2016 1:57 PM


  28. SM says: Dec 6, 2016 1:58 PM

    Put MNF back on ABC and stream it live on for free. Lose Thursday night football, close down the NFL Network, and kick ESPN to the curb.

  29. steelpenguin6687 says: Dec 6, 2016 2:02 PM

    I was only interested in last nights game because of FD. But, it was really tough listening to Gruden make excuses for Bryce Petty…well..the CBA this, the CBA that… I call BS, whatever happened to throwing a football through a tire swing to improve accuracy, does the CBA limit that? LOL

    Both Jets QBs were pathetic…

  30. fttssm says: Dec 6, 2016 2:02 PM

    I consider myself a die hard football fan, season ticket holder, play fantasy football and even bet on games occasionally. With that said I can’t figure out why this year I just don’t care to watch any NFL game I don’t have “action” on like I have in years past, I still watch College Football/Basketball, NBA and Golf, just not the NFL.

    What Gives?!!!???

  31. bleedingfacemask says: Dec 6, 2016 2:03 PM

    Five days ago the Huffington Post posted an article stating that ESPN lost more than a million subscribers over the past two months.

    Business Insider had an article on May 31 that ESPN had lost well over a million subscribers since February, and predicted that by the end of this year ESPN will have lost 12-13% of their subscribers over a five year period.

    In 20/20 hindsight, that was a conservative prediction.

    Anyone who says, “That should change next week, when the Patriots host the Ravens” isn’t paying any attention to the numbers.

    It’s not MNF ratings that’s dying…ESPN is dying.

  32. justafanofnfl says: Dec 6, 2016 2:04 PM

    Have the Cowboys play on Sunday night and have the Patriots play on Monday night-every week.

  33. hatersgonnahatehate says: Dec 6, 2016 2:07 PM

    lionhunter909 says:
    Dec 6, 2016 1:48 PM

    Three reason the MNF ratings suck:
    1. terrible announcers, the guy who replaced Mike Tirico is awful, and Gruden is just annoying….
    I think gruden is fine, but that replacement is a joke.

    ‘Hey Mike you know they call the nfl football the duke?’

    yeah I think he might have learned that when he played football…

  34. mongo3401 says: Dec 6, 2016 2:08 PM

    I stopped watching Jet games this year. It’s nothing new for the Jets. They have been building their fans hopes up for decades inky to smash the fans faces into the sidewalk by the end of the season.

    Doesn’t matter who owns the team or who is the GM or coach, doesn’t matter. The Jets are the Jets. No one has found the answer to turn it around, ever.

  35. micronin127 says: Dec 6, 2016 2:14 PM

    My sons, both high school age, won’t watch the games. They appear from time to time when the Patriots score and watch the replay.

    I think that they follow the game on Twitter or Snapchat and if their friends start talking about something… they appear.

    They disappear pretty quick. A 3 hour format is not for that generation. They would never sit through an entire game. They won’t even sit through the Super Bowl.

    And I take them to live games. They’ll sit through it live, as long as I feed them stadium food, but no way from the couch.

  36. largejk says: Dec 6, 2016 2:15 PM

    Take MNF off of ESPN and back on ABC. I always forget about MNF games unless my team is playing because ESPN is not a channel I check while flipping through channels to see what is on. I know garbage will be on ESPN so I never check.

  37. leftlaneisforpassingonly says: Dec 6, 2016 2:20 PM

    But more importantly, what were the TV ratings in London for last night’s game?

  38. fishyinalittledishy says: Dec 6, 2016 2:22 PM

    Anybody that can sit there to watch a game for 3 hours when the action is 1 hour in this day and age needs to get a life, if it’s not their own playing and even then only if they are in the game. I hate to say during the Dolphins Ravens one sided encounter I lasted until Tannehill’s first of three Ints, just into the 2nd qtr. The Fins looked not intrested so that was my queue to do something else.

  39. cowboylover says: Dec 6, 2016 2:29 PM

    Monday night is literally the only time I turn on ESPN.

  40. steelerfanjo says: Dec 6, 2016 2:37 PM

    Someday, people in the NFL will realize to never put… JETS, JAGS, TITANS, NINERS, SEAHAWKS, BROWNS, TEXANS, CHARGERS, AND BUCS in prime-time. Boring teams, boring fans, and no one cares.

  41. frankmalzonefan says: Dec 6, 2016 2:43 PM

    To be fair, most of New England would have tuned in to the game for the karma – driven unintentional comedy but both the Celts and Bruins were playing.

  42. sharksman says: Dec 6, 2016 2:44 PM

    I am with a lot of the posters, I watch my Team and thats about it. I used to watch any football game on, now i find myself watching anything else. It is a weird year. Plus having weak games on prime time does not help.
    They really need to get rid of Thursday night football.

  43. bleedingfacemask says: Dec 6, 2016 2:45 PM

    largejk says:
    Dec 6, 2016 2:15 PM

    Take MNF off of ESPN and back on ABC.
    I met a guy a few months ago who does content creation for Disney, and I asked him about this.

    He told me they’ve made WAY too much money with DWTS on Monday nights over the last 23 years. Plus, they have World News Tonight, which has pretty decent ratings.

    There is no way Disney will move MNF back to ABC. It would ruin their Monday night ratings ownership, and simultaneously kill ESPN.

  44. troy43mvp says: Dec 6, 2016 2:55 PM

    I decided to turn on Extreme Amish Buggy Jumping instead. Turned out to be the right choice as bonus coverage of Extreme Quality Cabinet Building was included. I’ll tell you what that Abram Hershberger is nothing nice on the road.

  45. NRG Stadium's Wonky Grass says: Dec 6, 2016 2:57 PM

    I think we’ve all just reached our breaking point with the league’s ridiculousness, particularly the officiating. I speak for a lot of fans when I say: I somewhat passively watch my team’s games, but I haven’t this season watched a single down of a game involving teams I don’t follow.

    The Monday game with the Texans and Raiders sent me into NFL apathy.

  46. artvan15 says: Dec 6, 2016 2:58 PM

    TV ratings are done the way the government counts unemployment. They are actually a lot worse then they report. Just fudge the numbers to make themselves feel good.

  47. dumbaseinstien says: Dec 6, 2016 2:59 PM

    Produce a bad product, receive bad results. Like the Democratic party, the NFL won’t listen to the people. they just bull-forge ahead with changes that nobody, apart from a very small group of political activists, likes. End result, Trump election & declining NFL viewership. You want viewers, revert the game back 15 years & leave it alone. Walla! High Ratings Again!

    Complicated I know…

  48. chippys lost binky says: Dec 6, 2016 3:06 PM

    Clicked over between the 1st and 2nd periods of the hockey game long enough to hear the best numbers related statement I ever heard on bspn’s MNF. They said tickets for the game were going for $5 with field level seats at $20 and the place was still at least a 1/3 empty. If no one would go to the game at those prices is it a surprise almost no one watched?

  49. tqaztec says: Dec 6, 2016 3:09 PM

    I did not want to watch Jet D score negative six points for my team.

  50. mark4steelers says: Dec 6, 2016 3:19 PM

    This is the exact same thing as parents feeding their kids Steak every night & then one day, out of the blue, they switch it to Liver & Onions (because it costs less). The kids, screaming & crying refusing to eat it…but the parents are steadfast in their “It’s Good for you! Try it, you’ll like it” (really meaning “you’ll get use to it & won’t remember the ‘good ol’ days”). But no matter how much time goes by, Liver isn’t ever as good as Steak…so the kids refuse to participate.

  51. rcali says: Dec 6, 2016 3:23 PM

    I tuned in at the end to see if my correlated teaser with the Colts and Under would win. It did. I was happy.

  52. ralphwilsonisrich says: Dec 6, 2016 3:35 PM

    Get Keith Jackson in the booth

  53. harrisonhits2 says: Dec 6, 2016 5:31 PM

    “It was still the lowest Monday Night Football, and it reflected a 40-percent reduction from Cowboys-Washington a year ago in Week 13.”

    So how is a 40% drop not a disaster from a ratings standpoint?

    I was one of the many people not watching the game.

  54. laserw says: Dec 6, 2016 5:53 PM

    I feel sorry for Todd Bowles. His team has given up on him and his GM has bought three day old bread and expected Todd to make something fresh out of it.

    Washington can’t wait for Todd to be fired – he’ll be their next defensive coordinator.

  55. charger383 says: Dec 6, 2016 6:42 PM

    It was on for while as background, like having police scanner on, but I was doing other stuff

Leave a Reply

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