The dark cloud hovering over the NFL’s sagging TV ratings has a silver lining.
As traditional boob-tube viewership numbers decline, more and more people are watching via the Internet.
Austin Karp of SportsBusiness Daily recently reported that NBC set a record for Sunday Night Football with 933,000 unique streams of the Eagles-Cowboys game. That’s an 84-percent increase over last year’s Week Eight Sunday night game between the Packers and Broncos.
Those numbers surely were buoyed by those who were watching the World Series on TV and the game on a second screen.
While the total audience regardless of platform is still down, it’s obvious that one of the various reasons for reduced TV viewership is increased online viewership. By the time the current broadcasting deals expire, that dynamic likely will be rooted even more deeply — and it surely will impact how the NFL distributes its product in the future.