46.7 million tune in AFC championship


The decisive AFC championship game that sent the Indianapolis Colts to this year's Super Bowl raked in some 46.7 million viewers on Sunday, strong enough to qualify as TV's most-watched program since last year's Super Bowl post-game programming.

According to CBS, the game that ran from roughly 6:30-10:30 p.m. ET averaged 46.7 million viewers and 17.6 rating in adults 18-49 (share information is not immediately available) and 19.6 rating in adults 25-54, according to preliminary estimates from Nielsen Media Research.

The 38-34 game that saw the Colts beat the New England Patriots to secure their Feb. 4 Super Bowl berth against the Chicago Bears put a big dent in virtually everything else in primetime on Sunday.

ABC's "Desperate Housewives" (17.1 million, 6.6 rating/13 share in adults 18-49) was off its usual game at 9 p.m. NBC was off the radar with its regular lineup of 8 p.m.'s "Grease: You're the One that I Want" (8.1 million, 2.8/6), 9 p.m.'s "The Apprentice" (6.9 million, 2.8/6) and 10 p.m.'s "Crossing Jordan" (7.6 million, 2.4/6). Fox, which carried the decisive NFC championship game earlier in the day, punted in primetime with repeats of its regular Sunday comedies.