FOX may have aired its most-viewed Week 1 NFL game ever, but the network was also home to the only game of the weekend to have a decline in ratings.
Regional NFL action featuring Panthers/Giants drew an 8.1 final rating and 13.086 million viewers on FOX Sunday afternoon, down 6% in ratings and 8% in viewership last year (DAL/TB*: 8.6, 14.149 mil), but up 59% and 66%, respectively, from 2008 (STL/PHI*: 5.1, 7.873 mil).
Of the seven NFL telecasts during Week 1, the early FOX game was the only one to have a decline in ratings, and one of just two to have a decline in viewership (ESPN’s Monday night Chargers/Chiefs game was down slightly).
Additionally, the telecast was the second-lowest rated of the weekend, ahead of only the aforementioned Chargers/Chiefs game.
Despite the drop, FOX still had its most-viewed Week 1 doubleheader ever, owing primarily to massive numbers for the national window. The telecast, which featured Packers/Eagles, drew a massive 16.5 rating and 28.023 million viewers — the network’s top Week 1 telecast ever.
Asterisk (*) indicates featured game of window.
(Ratings from Sports Business Daily)