NFL Ratings Plunge As 23 Million Fewer Viewers Watch Divisional Playoffs

This past weekend the NFL had three very competitive games among its four divisional round playoff contests.

Unfortunately for the league, ratings continued to plummet.

In fact, ratings are plummeting so much that virtually no major media outlets are even talking about ratings at all. It’s almost like the league and its television partners have put out the code red not to acknowledge the collapse in viewership so far in 2018.

Here are the ugly details head to head in the same timeslots as last year:

2018

Saints-Vikings 35.6 million viewers

2017

Packers-Cowboys 48.5 million viewers

2018

Jags-Steelers 31.4 million viewers

2017

Steelers-Chiefs 37.1 million viewers

2018 

Titans-Patriots 26.7 million viewers

2017

Texans-Patriots 29.8 million viewers

2018

Falcons-Eagles 27.1 million viewers

2017

Seahawks-Falcons 28.7 million viewers

Yep, every single game was down, no matter how good the games were. And, remember, three of these games were highly competitive in the divisional round this year. Whereas last year only two of the games were competitive. Hell, three of the four windows even feature one of the same teams from last year. And yes, I know, the Cowboys and the Packers played last year and those are the two biggest fan base draws in the NFL, but even if you pull that game out the numbers for the other three games also declined double digits. (The three other games were down 15.3%, 10.4% and 5.6%)

Adding all these numbers up 120.8 million viewers watched the NFL divisional round playoffs in 2018 vs. 144.1 million who watched in 2017, a decline of 23.3 million total viewers.

That’s an overall viewership decline of over 16%, even steeper than last week’s 13% playoff decline. (Even if you leave out the Packers-Cowboys numbers completely the NFL playoff ratings would have still been down 10.3%).

These playoff numbers weren’t just bad compared to last year either, they hit a ten year low.

Will that change this coming weekend with the AFC and NFC title games? We’ll see. But no matter how you slice it, the NFL ratings, both playoff and regular season, are collapsing in 2018.

In fact, playoff rating declines have been even worse than regular season rating declines.

It’s almost like fans are fed up with the politicization of football.

Nah, that couldn’t be it.

Probably just another reason.

Let’s talk more about Colin Kaepernick and players kneeling!

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