Mike Martz

Are sagging NFL ratings a cause for concern?

Are sagging NFL ratings a cause for concern?

There is no denying the NFL is troubled by its sagging television numbers, with viewership showing double-digit declines as the 2016 season approaches the midway point.

Through the first six weeks of the season, “Thursday Night Football” was down 18% compared with last year, “Sunday Night Football” had dropped 19% and “Monday Night Football” had slipped 24%. Although game telecasts are still reaching as many people, the ratings show fans aren’t sticking around as long.

Among the theories for the swoon are a heightened interest in the contentious presidential election, fan fallout from San Francisco’s Colin Kaepernick and other players kneeling during the...