NFL ratings continue to drop in relation to recent years, but the NFL will say that the ratings continue to drop to a smaller extent than TV viewership is dropping across the board.
Via SportsBusiness Journal, the AFC title game drew a 27.3 in the mid-afternoon window, down 0.1 from last year’s Packers-Falcons game on FOX in the same spot. In comparison to the January 2016 Patriots-Broncos game, the Jaguars-Patriots game was down 4.5 ratings points, of 14.6 percent.
The late game on FOX, a blowout win by the Eagles over the Vikings, generated a 24.7 overnight rating, down from 27.6 rating that came from last year’s Steelers-Patriots game on CBS. It was the lowest number in the 6:40 p.m. ET window since the 45-7 win by the Patriots over the Colts in the #DeflateGate game from three years ago. The highest number in the early-evening title-game slot in the past decade came eight years ago, when the Vikings and Saints churned up a 33.3 for their overtime classic.
So the numbers remain strong, and they will be even stronger if/when more star players and national teams (like the Cowboys or Packers or Steelers) are in the conference championship games.