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The Super Bowl scored its first ratings increase in five years, with just under 100 million viewers on average watching Fox’s broadcast on Sunday.
Super Bowl LIV drew an average of 99.9 million viewers and a 41.6 household ratings, both slight upticks from CBS’ broadcast of Super Bowl LIII in 2019 (98.2 million, 41.1). Per Fox Sports, a Spanish-language simulcast on Fox Deportes and streaming on Fox, NFL and Verizon platforms boosted the average viewership to 102 million, a very small increase on last year’s multiplatform audience of 101.7 million.
The game was fairly competitive throughout, with the Kansas City Chiefs staging a fourth-quarter comeback that saw them turn a 10-point deficit into a 31-20 victory over the San Francisco 49ers. Still, the game came in under 100 million viewers for its primary broadcast for the second straight year after a nine-year run where it topped 100 million.
The broadcast also featured a widely praised halftime show starring Jennifer Lopez and Shakira. It averaged 103 million viewers, more than the broadcast as a whole and up 4 percent from last year’s halftime with Maroon 5. The halftime show has outdrawn the game in each of the past nine years.
In Kansas City, the game averaged a massive 55.7 household rating and 89 share. Viewership there peaked in the fourth quarter at 62.6/97 — meaning that 97 percent of all Nielsen-measured TV viewing happening in Kansas City at that time was of the Super Bowl. The San Francisco market also drew huge numbers with a 48.6/83.
Following about 20 minutes of postgame coverage, The Masked Singer kicked off its third season with 23.73 million viewers and an 8.1 rating among adults 18-49 — both improvements on The World’s Best (22.2 million, 7.0) on CBS last year. Both Masked Singer figures are far and away series highs for the show. It’s in the middle of the pack for post-Super Bowl shows in the last decade, but up considerably from Fox’s last postgame broadcast, 24: Legacy, in 2017 (17.58 million viewers, 6.1 in adults 18-49).
The ratings uptick for Super Bowl LIV caps another year of ratings growth for the NFL. Regular-season games grew by about 5 percent in viewers over the previous season, and the first two rounds of the playoffs also improved. The conference championship games on Jan. 19, however, both declined as neither one was especially competitive.
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