TV ratings: NBC scores with football on Thanksgiving night

Colin Kaepernick
San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick sets up to pass against the Seattle Seahawks in the teams’ NFL game Thursday night, broadcast by NBC.
(Tony Avelar / Associated Press)

NBC carved itself a nice helping of ratings fortune on Thanksgiving night.

NBC notched a 5.8 rating among the key demographic, adults 18 to 49, and 17.3 million viewers with its broadcast of the Seattle Seahawks vs. San Francscio 49ers NFL game, according to fast nationals. 

The early performance tally is down slightly from last year’s game between the Baltimore Ravens and Pittsburgh Steelers, which drew a 6.0 rating and 18.61 million viewers.

The game helped the peacock network take the night among the demo and total viewership.  (A side note on the network’s daytime performance: Its airing of the 88th annual Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade was down from last year, garnering a 6.2 rating in adults 18-49 and 22.6 million total viewers. Last year’s coverage scored 25.2 million viewers.)


CBS kept its schedule relatively intact. The network kicked off the night with a “Big Bang Theory” rerun, which posted a 1.7 rating in the demo and 8 million viewers. A new episode of “Mom” brought in a 1.6 rating in the demo, followed by an episode of “Two and a Half Men” that received a 1.5 in the demo. Both were down double digits from the previous week, but that’s to be expected given the holiday and competition from NBC’s broadcast of the NFL game. 

Freshman entrant “The McCarthys” also took a dive from last week with a 1.1 rating in the 18-49 demo in the 9:30 p.m. slot. “Elementary” closed out the night on CBS with a 1.1 rating in the demo, rising 10% from the previous week.

Fox and ABC, meanwhile, broadcast specials in the 8 p.m. hour. Fox aired “Cause for Paws: An All-Star Dog Spectacular.” With a lead-in of NFL games on the network, the two-hour special garnered a 1.6 ratings. It outpaced ABC’s unsung hero tribute “Thank You America with Robin Roberts,” which registered an 0.6 in the key 18-49 demo.  

ABC rounded out its night with repeats of “How to Get Away with Murder.”


Elsewhere in broadcast, the CW was in repeat-mode Thursday night.

Twitter: @villarrealy