ESPN's Monday Night Football: 21.4 Million Viewers for Patriots-Saints Game
Second Most-Watched Cable Program of All-Time in Households and Viewers;
Second-Highest Rating in ESPN History;
ESPN Wins the Night in Households, Viewers, and Key Male and Adult Demos Among All Networks
This week's Monday Night Football game on ESPN � the New Orleans Saints' improving to 11-0 with a 38-17 victory over the New England Patriots � earned a 15.0 rating, representing an average of 14,872,000 households (21,402,000 viewers � P2+), making it the second most-watched cable telecast of all time among both households and viewers, as well as ESPN's second-highest rating in the network's 30-year history. The MNF game also ranks as the top prime time program of the past two weeks (since 11/16/09) among all broadcast and cable networks in households, viewers, and all key male and adult demos.
The Patriots-Saints game finished just shy of ESPN's Monday Night Football telecast October 5 (Green Bay Packers at Minnesota Vikings), which set the all-time cable records for households (15,136,000) and viewers (21,839,000), based on an ESPN-record 15.3 rating. ESPN has set the cable household viewership record four times in as many years since acquiring the rights to MNF. In all, cable's seven biggest household audiences ever -- and eight of the top 10 � (excluding breaking news) are ESPN MNF games.
Monday's game delivered a combined 35.0 rating in Boston (13.1 on ESPN and 21.9 on WCVB-ABC), as well as a combined 66.7 rating in New Orleans (23.3 on ESPN and 43.4 on WDSU-NBC). The New Orleans rating is the highest combined local rating for ESPN's Monday Night Football this year, surpassing the 63.9 in New Orleans for the Falcons-Saints game (Nov. 2).
For 2009, ESPN's MNF telecasts represent cable's 12 biggest audiences among households and viewers (and 13 of the top 14 among households). Through 12 weeks (13 games) of the NFL season, ESPN's MNF is averaging a 10.6 rating and 10,447,000 households (14,560,000 P2+), up 18 percent, 18 percent and 19 percent, respectively, from last season.
ESPN Deportes' Spanish-language coverage of Monday Night Football also delivered its highest rating and most-watched NFL game ever. The Patriots-Saints delivered a 1.5 Hispanic rating and 77,000 Hispanic households, surpassing the 1.4 Hispanic rating and 68,000 Hispanic households from the Jets-Dolphins game (Oct. 12). For the season, MNF games on ESPN Deportes are averaging a 1.0 Hispanic rating, 46,000 Hispanic households and 62,000 Hispanic viewers, increases of 150%, 171% and 100%, respectively, from 2008.
ESPN.com had 75.6 million page views to NFL content accessed via computers and mobile devices for Monday thru Tuesday at noon -- up 13 percent from the comparable time period last year. Specifically, page views for the NFL section on computers and mobile were up 20 percent from last year. Additionally, ESPN.com streamed 1.5 million NFL related videos.
Most-Viewed Monday Night Football Games on ESPN (2006 � Present)
Rank Date Teams Viewers (000s) HHs (000s)
1 10/05/2009 Green Bay Packers-Minnesota Vikings 21,839 15,136
2 11/30/2009 New England Patriots-New Orleans Saints 21,402 14,872
3 09/15/2008 Philadelphia Eagles-Dallas Cowboys 18,608 12,953
4 12/03/2007 New England Patriots-Baltimore Ravens 17,522 12,529
5 10/23/2006 New York Giants-Dallas Cowboys 16,028 11,807
6 11/09/2009 Pittsburgh Steelers-Denver Broncos 16,002 11,358
7 09/28/2009 Carolina Panthers-Dallas Cowboys 15,705 11,354
8 09/25/2006 Atlanta Falcons-New Orleans Saints 14,999 10,850
9 09/21/2009 Indianapolis Colts-Miami Dolphins 14,710 10,849
10 10/16/2006 Chicago Bears-Arizona Cardinals 14,231 10,804
Top 10 Most-Viewed Programs in Cable Television History (Households):
Rank Date Teams Network HHs (000s)
1 10/05/2009 Green Bay Packers-Minnesota Vikings ESPN 15,136
2 11/30/2009 New England Patriots-New Orleans Saints ESPN 14,872
3 09/15/2008 Philadelphia Eagles-Dallas Cowboys ESPN 12,953
4 12/03/2007 New England Patriots-Baltimore Ravens ESPN 12,529
5 10/23/2006 New York Giants-Dallas Cowboys ESPN 11,807
6 11/09/2009 Pittsburgh Steelers-Denver Broncos ESPN 11,358
7 09/28/2009 Carolina Panthers-Dallas Cowboys ESPN 11,354
8 11/09/1993 Larry King (NAFTA Debate) CNN 11,174
9 10/02/2008 Vice Presidential Debate FOX NEWS 11,098
10 09/25/2006 Atlanta Falcons-New Orleans Saints ESPN 10,850
Top 10 Most-Viewed Programs in Cable Television History (Viewers):
Rank Date Teams Network Viewers (000s)
1 10/05/2009 Green Bay Packers-Minnesota Vikings ESPN 21.839
2 11/30/2009 New England Patriots-New Orleans Saints ESPN 21,402
3 09/15/2008 Philadelphia Eagles-Dallas Cowboys ESPN 18,608
4 12/03/2007 New England Patriots-Baltimore Ravens ESPN 17,522
5 08/17/2007 High School Musical 2 Disney Channel 17,241
6 11/09/1993 Larry King (NAFTA Debate) CNN 16,837
7 12/25/1994 Detroit Lions-Miami Dolphins ESPN 16,063
8 10/23/2006 New York Giants-Dallas Cowboys ESPN 16,028
9 11/09/2009 Pittsburgh Steelers-Denver Broncos ESPN 16,002
10 09/28/2009 Carolina Panthers-Dallas Cowboys ESPN 15,705
Note: excluding breaking news; live + same day
Top 3 Ratings in ESPN History:
Rank Date Teams Rating
1 10/05/2009 Green Bay Packers-Minnesota Vikings 15.3
2 11/30/2009 New England Patriots-New Orleans Saints 15.0
3 12/06/1987 Chicago Bears-Minnesota Vikings 14.4
RAVENS-PACKERS AT LAMBEAU FIELD THIS WEEK ON MNF
This week's MNF game on ESPN Dec. 7 will be a matchup of playoff hopefuls when Ray Lewis and the Baltimore Ravens travel to historic Lambeau Field to face Aaron Rodgers and the Green Bay Packers at 8:30 p.m. ET. ESPN's game around the game coverage begins at 3:30 p.m. with NFL Live and continues throughout the afternoon.