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NFL Playoffs Ratings Are Massive

What a weekend for the NFL.

The Divisional Round reached a seven-year high and was up 20% from 2021.

Nearly 37 million viewers watched the 49ers defeat the Packers Saturday night on Fox, making it the most-watched Saturday show in 28 years, dating back to the Lillehammer Olympics in 1994.

The 49ers-Packers drew 10.6 million more viewers than the comparable Ravens-Bills game in 2021. As Michael Mulvihill points out, that increase is greater than the total viewership of the 2021 Oscars (10.4 million viewers) and the 2021 NBA Finals (9.9 million viewers).

Think about that the next time some TV anchor tries to convince you the NBA is on the rise while the NFL is on the decline.

Elsewhere, the Bills-Chiefs matchup on CBS — the game of the decade — drew 42.7 million viewers. The game peaked at 51.7 million as Patrick Mahomes and Josh Allen traded heroics late in the waning minutes. Bills-Chiefs was the most-viewed divisional playoff game in five years.

Even the early Saturday window, a historically challenging time slot, averaged 30.8 million. The Bengals-Titans bout on CBS was the highest-rated Saturday afternoon divisional playoff game in six years.

Finally, Bucs-Rams averaged 38.1 million viewers on NBC. Starting at 3 pm on Sunday, Bucs-Rams managed to outdraw the comparable Chiefs-Browns thriller last year with a four million viewer increase.

Each of these games came down to the final second — not seconds but second. So it’s no wonder Americans did nothing this past weekend but watch football. It’s comforting to see we were not the only ones who spent that much time on the couch.

Written by Bobby Burack

Bobby Burack covers media, politics, and sports at OutKick.


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  1. Remember during the 2014 FIFA world cup when people were saying soccer would overtake football in America over the next 15-20 years? hahaha. Football is king, and will stay that way. Even though I much prefer the college game, it’s hard to beat the NFL playoffs

  2. Think about that the next time some TV anchor tries to convince you the NBA is on the rise while the NFL is on the decline.

    It’s all good. It comes from the same athletic tree. Either way you still jocking our sport. When will you guys ever get it. Stick to baseball, hickey and Nascar but still cheer on our brothers in arms. #FistRaised. #ForTheCulture

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