Note: No Brett Favre lead to a drop of only 3% in the overnight ratings vs. the kickoff game last season.
via press release:
NFL KICKOFF ON NBC SCORES SECOND-BEST NFL PRIMETIME REGULAR-SEASON OVERNIGHT IN 13 YEARS
Packers-Saints 17.2/28 Overnight is Second-Best NFL Kickoff Game Ever & Second-Best NBC Primetime NFL Game Ever
NBC Dominates Primetime Competition
NEW YORK – Sept. 9, 2011 – Last night’s NFL Kickoff game on NBC between the Green Bay Packers and New Orleans Saints was the second-highest rated NFL regular-season primetime game in 13 years; the second-highest rated NFL Kickoff game ever; the second-highest rated NBC regular-season primetime game ever; and defeated its closest primetime competition among the broadcast networks by 283 percent, according to overnight ratings data released today by The Nielsen Company.
, which featured the last two champions and was won by the Packers, 42-34, scored a 17.2 overnight /28 share (8:45-11:45 p.m. ET), the second-highest regular-season primetime NFL rating on any network since Dec. 21, 1998 (Broncos-Dolphins, 17.4/27). It was also the second-highest rated NFL Kickoff ever and the second-highest rated NBC regular-season primetime game ever behind only last year’s Thursday night NFL Kickoff (17.7/28; down 3%), which featured a NFC Championship Game rematch between the Minnesota Vikings, led by quarterback Brett Favre, and the then-defending champion New Orleans Saints.
The rating peaked just before halftime with an 18.8/29 from 9:30-10 p.m. The Packers rotated between eight- and 15-point leads for the entire second half.
NBC DOMINATES PRIMETIME: NBC dominated primetime (8-11 p.m.) with a 16.1/26 average in the metered markets, establishing a 283-percent margin of victory over CBS's second-place 4.2/7 and beating the combined delivery of CBS, ABC (3.3/5), Fox (2.5/4) and CW (0.7/1) by 50 percent.
The 16.1/26 primetime overnight is the highest 8-11 p.m. average for any network on television since May 25 (Fox,finale, 17.1/27) and the highest non-Olympic Thursday night average for NBC since the Frasier finale more than seven years ago, May 13, 2004 (17.4/25), even topping the primetime average for last year’s NFL Kickoff (15.9/26)
The final half hour of NFL Kickoff 2011 (8-8:30 pm), the pregame show to celebrate the start of the NFL season, generated a 9.4 overnight rating, up 11 percent versus last year (8.5/15).
NFL KICKOFF – THURSDAY NIGHT SEASON OPENERS OVERNIGHT RATINGS:
2011: NBC 17.2/28 (Green Bay 42 – New Orleans 34)
2010: NBC 17.7/28 (New Orleans 14 – Minnesota 9)
2009: NBC 13.8/23 (Pittsburgh 13 – Tennessee 10)
2008: NBC 10.1/17 (NY Giants 16 – Washington 7)*
2007: NBC 13.0/21 (Indianapolis 41 – New Orleans 10)
2006: NBC 13.5/22 (Pittsburgh 28 - Miami 17)
2005: ABC 13.1/22 (New England 30 – Oakland 20)
2004: ABC 12.6/20 (New England 27 – Indianapolis 24)
2003: ABC 14.5/23 (Washington 16 – NY Jets 13)
2002: ESPN 7.6/13 (Houston 19 –10)**
*Early start due to the Republican National Convention
**U.S. HH Rating: overnight rating not available
TOP METERED MARKETS FOR SAINTS-PACKERS:
New Orleans, 57.7/75
Kansas City, 23.0/34
Las , 21.7/33