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NFL Devastated After Sunday Night Ratings Take Shocking Turn

Deadline

At the halfway point now in the NFL season, the much traveled Oakland Raiders pulled off a Sunday Night Football win against the Miami Dolphins as yet again protests stole much of the game’s thunder. The Raiders’ Week 9 27-24 victory saw the Dolphins’ Michael Thomas, Julius Thomas and wide receiver Kenny Stills kneel during the national anthem.

That’s the first such protest by players for the Florida franchise since the team’s coach instituted a rule against such displays. It is also the first game for the Dolphins since their owner and the players put together an annual fund for “advocacy and social justice programs” on November 4. On yet another Sunday of big games and Daylight Savings Time catch ups, the SNF protests last night came as ratings for the league are down 5% from the numbers stumbles of last season and nearly 19% from a similar point in the 2015-2016 season.

Pulling focus to last night’s sometimes fog drenched SNF, the NBC broadcast game snared a 9.6/16 in metered market results.

Up a scant 2%, that’s pretty steady with last week’s SNF season low when the Pittsburgh Steelers beat the Detroit Lions and SNF faced a very dramatic Game 5 of the 2017 World Series. That 8:30 – 11:30 PM ET game result went on to draw an NFL tepid 4.8/15 among adults 18-49 and 13.86 million viewers. Even with a season of ratings slides, that was a rare loss of a Sunday for the NFL and the Comcast-owned net to the 5.3/17 and 18.94 million that the baseball game and Fox scored.

Year-to-year, last night’s Raiders vs. Dolphins battle declined 18% from the early numbers of the comparable game of last year, which Oakland won.

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