NBC "Sunday Night Football" says the NFL programming franchise is once again on track to be the most-viewed TV series this season -- yet ratings are down from a year ago.
NBC says "SNF" averaged 18.2 million Nielsen viewers for live program-plus-same day viewing from September 7 through December 25. The 2017-2018 TV season ends in late May 2018.
This year’s series is down 11% from a year ago, when "SNL" averaged 20.3 million viewers.
NBC is airing one less "SNF" game then originally scheduled. Recently, the NFL decided not to air a Sunday Night game for New Year’s Eve. Instead, all NFL games will be played either at 1 p.m. or 4:25 p.m ET on Sunday. The league did not announce which teams originally would have played in the Sunday night game.
For "SNF" this would be the seventh year in a row as the top TV series -- a run that began in the 2011-2012 TV season. Overall, NBC has aired “SNF” for 12 seasons starting in 2006.
So far this season, “Sunday Night Football” at 18.2 million average viewers is leading over CBS/NFL Network’s “Thursday Night Football” at 14.1 million, while CBS' "Big Bang Theory" comes in at 14.037 million. NBC/NFLN’s "Thursday Night Football" is at 14.036 million, and CBS' "NCIS" is at 13.0 million. (The data excludes pre-and post game sports shows).
NBC also claims, for now -- the tenth year in a row -- the highest 18-49 rating for the fall TV period with a Nielsen 6.1 for live program[ plus-same day viewing. CBS/NFLN’s "Thursday Night Football" came in at 4.5, while NBC/NFLN’s "Thursday Night Football" is at 4.1; followed by AMC’s "The Walking Dead" with 3.8 and ESPN’s "Monday Night Football" at 3.7.