The Super Bowl delivered its usual gigantic audience on Sunday, though ratings for the game this year appear to be off a bit from last year's broadcast.
CBS, which carried the game, averaged a 34.6 rating/52 share in primetime Sunday (with those numbers likely to change some because of the live broadcast). Viewership was in the 86 million range, compared to 90.7 million in 2006. Just as predictably, the other networks hardly registered on the night. ABC was second at 3.0/5, followed by NBC, 2.3/4; FOX, 1.9/3; and The CW, 0.8/1.
(UPDATE: Ratings for the Super Bowl actually improved a little over last year when the nationwide live broadcast was taken into account.)
In the adults 18-49 demographic, CBS scored a 28.0 rating. ABC's 1.8 was the best of the rest. FOX averaged 1.1, NBC 1.0 and The CW 0.5.
Super Bowl XLI, featuring the Indianapolis Colts and Chicago Bears, drew a 40.4/61 in the 7 p.m. hour. ABC's "Extreme Makeover: Home Edition" took second with a 2.6/4. NBC kicked off a "Grease: You're the One That I Want" marathon with a 1.7/3. A "Simpsons" repeat and the movie "X2: X-Men United" was fourth, beating a "Beauty and the Geek" repeat on The CW.
The game fell slightly to a 39.3/57 at 8 p.m. ABC held onto second with "America's Funniest Home Videos," 3.1/5. "Grease," 2.2/3, and FOX's movie, 2.0/3, tied for third in viewers, while The CW went with more "Beauty and the Geek."
At 9 p.m., the Super Bowl took another small dip, to 39.2/57, as the Colts closed out their 29-17 victory over the Bears. ABC aired the movie "Old School." Hour three of "Grease" delivered a 2.5/4 for NBC, topping the 2.1/3 for the conclusion of "X2" on FOX. A third hour of "Beauty and the Geek" earned a 1.0/1 for The CW.
The Super Bowl post-game show and "Criminal Minds" averaged 19.8/32 for CBS at 10 p.m. "Old School" posted a 3.4/6 for ABC, and one more hour of "Grease" drew a 3.0/5 for NBC.
On Saturday, CBS' drama repeats and "48 Hours" led the night with a 4.9/8. NBC was second at 4.5/8, followed closely by FOX at 4.3/7 (FOX had more total viewers). ABC trailed with a 3.1/5.