ESPN’s Monday Night Football ratings are rebounding from a down year last season, and that trend should continue tomorrow night — thanks in part to a commercial.
Disney, the company that owns both ESPN and the Star Wars franchise, has decided to debut the new trailer for The Last Jedi during halftime of Monday Night Football tomorrow night. That should provide a spike in the ratings: Two years ago, when the trailer for The Force Awakens debuted at halftime of a Monday night game, ratings spiked as the trailer aired.
Tomorrow night’s Vikings-Bears game was likely going to beat last year’s Monday night Week Five game in the ratings anyway: Last year’s Week Five game between the Panthers and Buccaneers was one of the least-watched Monday night games ever.
Ratings comparisons aren’t always perfect because they don’t always take into consideration everything else going on. For instance, tonight’s Chiefs-Texans game on NBC will certainly get better ratings than last year’s Week Five Sunday night game, because that game went head-to-head with a presidential debate.
So on Tuesday morning, when ESPN boasts of strong ratings for Monday Night Football, it may have more to do with Luke Skywalker than Mitch Trubisky.