This year, the Super Bowl TV ratings told a very different story from the streaming numbers. While the latter hit an all-time high, the TV ratings reached their lowest since 2007.
Super Bowl Viewership Drops To All-Time Low For NFL & CBS; Most Streamed Game Ever https://t.co/QYRRUFsSTP
— Deadline Hollywood (@DEADLINE) February 9, 2021
There’s been some pretty interesting headlines surrounding the TV ratings for Super Bowl LV. The first one being that Nielsen actually took an extra day to release the ratings to the media. Something about a count being delayed just sounds so familiar.
Is Nielsen fortifying the Super Bowl ratings? Maybe a pipe busted and it slowed the count? I’m sure the cabal of elite power brokers are doing all they can to make sure every viewer is counted.
— Jason Whitlock (@WhitlockJason) February 9, 2021
“Super Bowl numbers are still being processed and verified. We anticipate that final viewing figures, which will include Out Of Home (OOH) viewing, will be available to the media tomorrow,” a Nielsen spokesperson said yesterday.
“We will update the press and the industry accordingly when a final timeline is confirmed.” Well, eventually the ratings came and they looked grim for the NFL and CBS.
Super Bowl TV Ratings Plunge to 14 Year Low
Super Bowl LV drew in an average of just 96.4 million a viewers across all television platforms. The main broadcaster, CBS, fell well below the 100 million mark, attracting only 92 out of the total 96.4 million.
Although it was still the most viewed TV show in the year, it fell short of previous years’ editions. To put it into context, last year’s Super Bowl brought in 102 million viewers across FOX and their platforms.
Furthermore, the Super Bowls in 2018 and 2019, both of which featured Tom Brady, easily beat this year’s viewerships numbers. They attracted 103.4 and 100.7 million viewers respectively.
In fact, this year’s game put up the lowest TV ratings for all Super Bowls since the 2007 showdown between the Colts and Bears.
One reason for this was likely the size of the market of the 2 teams.Both the Chiefs and Buccaneers are relatively small market teams so it makes sense that less casual fans would tune in.
In fact, there was a report that the viewership was higher in Boston than it was in Tampa Bay. Guess those Pats fans really miss Brady and Gronk.
— Barstool Sports (@barstoolsports) February 9, 2021
However, there was something positive to take away from all this. Despite low overall viewership numbers, the game did see a massive growth in the streaming numbers.
With the growing movement towards cord-cutting, the big game saw 5.7 million viewers per minute on online platforms, an all time record and 65% higher than last year’s game.
However, digital viewership only makes up around 6% of the total, so the game still indubitably underperformed.