Super Bowl ratings increased 143% over NFL playoff games

Super Bowl 52 was played at U.S. Bank Stadium in Minneapolis. (Image: Greg Gjerdingen/Flickr)

NBC said the ratings for its broadcast of Super Bowl 52 marked a 143% improvement over the ratings for this season’s NFL playoff games, claiming it as the best margin ever for a Super Bowl over the same season’s playoffs.

The network said the previous best was Super Bowl 49 in 2015, also on NBC, with a 128% advantage.

In all, the broadcast scored a 47.4/70 overnight rating/share on NBC (not including digital), according to Nielsen. The game peaked with a 52.2/74 overnight rating in the fourth quarter. The game’s ratings were 9% higher than the previous time the Philadelphia Eagles and New England Patriots met in the Super Bowl in 2005, when the broadcast earned a 43.4/63 rating/share on Fox.


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NBC said that overnight ranks ninth among all Super Bowls and is the third best of the 19 Super Bowls NBC has televised. Last year’s Super Bowl, featuring the Patriots against the Atlanta Falcons, recorded 111.3 million viewers.

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The halftime performance by Justin Timberlake improved slightly over the game itself and delivered a 48.1/70 overnight. The second half of Super Bowl 52 posted a 49.3/71, 8% better than the rating for the first half (45.5/69).

NBC said fast national ratings and Total Audience Delivery for Super Bowl LII will be issued later today.

Despite its team claiming its first ever Super Bowl win, Philadelphia was not at the top of the list for metered markets during the Super Bowl. Buffalo’s 56.4/78 put it in first ahead of Philadelphia’s 56.2/81.

For NBC, the Super Bowl broadcast kicked off a big month for February. This week, the network will begin coverage of the 2018 Winter Olympics from PyeongChang, South Korea.

“We are excited to have the Super Bowl on NBC, followed by the 2018 Winter Olympic Games in PyeongChang. The Olympics highlight our strengths and capabilities across Comcast NBCUniversal, as we combine the storytelling of NBC with Comcast technology to create a truly spectacular viewing experience. Overall, we feel great about our company and our positioning as we head into the year,” said Comcast CEO Brian Roberts in a statement.


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