6:18am PT by Michael O'Connell
Super Bowl Smashes Ratings Record, Pulls Historic 114.4 Million Viewers
Super Bowl XLIX surged to break multiple records on Sunday night, raking in 114.4 million viewers to become the most watched telecast in U.S. history. That easily tops the previous record, set in by the Super Bowl 2014, of 112.2 million.
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Earlier on Monday, overnight ratings suggested that the new record was attainable with the New England Patriots' narrow victory over the Seattle Seahawks delivering a 49.7 rating, the highest overnight rating in Super Bowl history. That's up 4 percent from the 2014 blowout that pulled a 47.6 rating — the fifth-highest overnight on record for a Super Bowl.
The highest overnight for a Super Bowl prior to last night's figure was in 2013 with a 48.1 rating, though that game went on to only gross 108 million viewers (a paltry sum, indeed). “Last night’s Patriots-Seahawks Super Bowl ranks among the most exciting sporting events in U.S. history,” said NBC Sports Group chairman Mark Lazarus. “Super Bowl XLIX delivered for all of our partners, proving once again that the Super Bowl is the most dominant and consistent property on television.”
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The game ranks No. 4 on the list of all time highest-rated Super Bowls in households, with a 47.5 rating. (1982 still ranks as the highest with a 49.1.)
NBC's good news extended to The Blacklist. The amply plugged post-Super Bowl show easily notched series highs with 26.5 million viewers overall and an 8.7 rating in adults 18-49. Both of those mark postgame highs, trumping the last time NBC hosted the telecast, airing The Voice in 2012.
Jimmy Fallon continued to reap Super Bowl benefits later in the evening, delivered the biggest total-viewer results for a post-Super Bowl late-night show in the history of People Meters.