TV Ratings: 'Monday Night Football' Gets Unusually Large 3-Day Bump

The Nov. 11 game ranks in the top 20 for the week in adults 18-49 growth.
Ezra Shaw/Getty Images

Live sports telecasts typically get only negligible ratings boosts with delayed viewing, as virtually everyone who watches does so as the game airs.

The Nov. 11 edition of ESPN's Monday Night Football was decidedly atypical, finishing among the top 20 shows in adults 18-49 gain over three days. The game, a 27-24 overtime win for the Seattle Seahawks over the San Francisco 49ers, drew Monday Night Football's biggest audience of the season in both the same-day and three-day ratings.

The ESPN broadcast added half a point to its 18-49 rating, the same as NBC's The Good Place and ahead of shows including NBC's The Blacklist and CBS' Survivor. The game also grew by 1.1 million viewers. 

Both figures are outliers for live sports. For the past eight weeks, Monday Night Football has added an average of 0.3 to its 18-49 rating and 651,000 total viewers over three days; the Nov. 11 gains are 67 percent and 69 percent above that average. The fact that two West Coast teams were involved — meaning that most of the game aired outside of primetime in their home markets — could be a factor in the larger-than-usual gains. So could its unusually long running time of just under four hours.

The other primetime NFL franchises, Fox's Thursday Night Football and NBC's Sunday Night Football, grow by only 1 percent each over three days.

Below are the top 20 shows (including ties) in three-day ratings gains among adults 18-49 and total viewers for the week of Nov. 11-17.

Adults 18-49

Show Network Live-plus-3
18-49 rating
Change from live + SD % change from live + SD
This Is Us NBC 2.49 1.13 83%
American Horror Story FX 1.3 0.8 160%
Grey's Anatomy ABC 2.08 0.77 59%
911 Fox 2.08 0.74 55%
Chicago PD NBC 1.72 0.73 74%
The Masked Singer Fox 2.36 0.72 44%
The Walking Dead AMC 1.84 0.72 64%
Law & Order: SVU NBC 1.38 0.69 99%
The Good Doctor ABC 1.48 0.65 79%
A Million Little Things ABC 1.45 0.65 80%
New Amsterdam NBC 1.36 0.64 90%
Chicago Fire NBC 1.64 0.56 52%
The Rookie ABC 1.08 0.55 103%
The Good Place NBC 1.1 0.5 83%
Monday Night Football ESPN 5.59 0.5 10%
Prodigal Son Fox 1.25 0.49 65%
The Blacklist NBC 0.98 0.49 98%
Survivor CBS 1.62 0.47 41%
SWAT CBS 1.00 0.46 85%
Blue Bloods CBS 1.03 0.46 80%
The Real Housewives of O.C. Bravo 0.92 0.46 100%

 

Total Viewers

Show Network Live-plus-3 viewers (000s) Change from live + SD % change from live + SD
Blue Bloods CBS 11,286 3,781 50%
The Good Doctor ABC 9,671 3,741 63%
This Is Us NBC 10,648 3,548 50%
New Amsterdam NBC 8,548 3,490 69%
Chicago PD NBC 9,911 3,440 53%
The Rookie ABC 6,635 3,029 84%
911 Fox 9,550 3,015 46%
Chicago Fire NBC 10,069 2,897 40%
FBI CBS 11,635 2,767 31%
NCIS CBS 14,381 2,733 23%
SWAT CBS 5,688 2,603 84%
Law & Order: SVU NBC 6,319 2,525 67%
The Blacklist NBC 6,369 2,389 60%
Chicago Med NBC 9,818 2,388 32%
NCIS: New Orleans CBS 8,791 2,381 37%
Young Sheldon CBS 11,420 2,369 26%
Grey's Anatomy ABC 8,627 2,290 36%
A Million Little Things ABC 6,823 2,258 49%
The Masked Singer Fox 7,716 2,137 38%
Evil CBS 5,402 2,085 63%

Source: Nielsen