NBC rushes to win with football

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Fueled by football, NBC won the week ending Sept. 16 in the key adults 18-49 demographic. But CBS returned to No. 1 in total viewers after finishing second the previous week.

The week marked the unofficial start of the TV season with the first fall season premiere: NBC's "The Biggest Loser."

Meanwhile, the 59th Primetime Emmys on Fox took a tumble Sunday with the franchise's lowest-ever adults 18-49 rating.

"Sunday Night Football" (15.3 million viewers, 6.5 rating/17 share) was the top program of the week among total viewers and adults 18-49, according to data from Nielsen Media Research.

The lopsided game that saw the New England Patriots beat the San Diego Chargers topped the Ryan Seacrest-hosted Emmy telecast by 51% in 18-49 and by more than 2.3 million viewers.

The Emmys' record-low 4.3/11 in adults 18-49 was down 17% from last year, when NBC carried the ceremony in August.

Things didn't look much brighter in total viewers, where the Emmys attracted 13.1 million, the show's smallest audience since 1990. That ceremony, also on Fox, drew 12.3 million viewers.

The two-hour premiere of "The Biggest Loser 4" (7.8 million, 3.1/9 in 18-49) matched its demo ratings for the season premiere in September and was up about 10% in viewership.

For a second consecutive week, Nielsen delayed final numbers for a Sunday football overrun until today. Last week, it was the overrun on Fox, this time around it was the spillover of CBS' Sunday football coverage into primetime. As a result, CBS' weekly averages exclude that portion of the network's Sunday lineup.

NBC led the weekly pack in 18-49 with a 2.3/7, followed by Fox (2.2/6). CBS is at a 2.0/6 and might go up by 0.1 or 0.2 when the ratings for the football overrun are factored in. ABC was fourth with a 1.8/5.

Among total viewers, CBS' 7.1 million (which also is expected to go up in the finals), topped Fox's 6.5 million, NBC's 6.2 million, ABC's 5.3 million and the CW's 2.1 million.
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