Numbers dispute Trump's tweet on National Football League ratings

Numbers dispute Trump's tweet on National Football League ratings

Numbers dispute Trump's tweet on National Football League ratings

For whatever reasons people choose to attribute to the NFL's ratings stumble, now more than a year old and something that will surely continue this season, it is not a problem that can really be diagnosed over a single weekend - let alone one game.

Across Monday's and all of Sunday's games, even the dampened showing from NBC's marquee primetime showdown, gross overnight ratings for league showdowns weren't off from those of 2016.

For last night's game between the Dallas Cowboys and Arizona Cardinals, the Monday Night Football game received a 9.3 overnight rating for ESPN.

NBC said 20 percent of households watching TV at the time viewed the game, down from 21 percent for last year's Bears and Cowboys game. Fox's afternoon game did a 10.3, down 16% from a year ago.

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The president may have his theories, but explaining why ratings are down isn't simple.

Members of the Washington Redskins linked arms Sunday night during the national anthem while some kneeled, garnering boos from their home fans. Whatever you think of the imbroglio give Trump this much, his perception that the anthem was used as a tool to goose anticipation among viewers was not off the mark. With attention on players kneeling during the national anthem, it's led the NFL's media partners to air the various renditions from each stadium as this has become a huge national story. Together, the pregame shows on CBS and Fox saw a 19 percent increase compared to a year ago.

CBS also took a hit to its national coverage of the Cincinnati-Green Bay game, which attracted a 13.8 rating compared to a 13.9 rating during its week-three coverage a year ago. But it is far more likely that whatever Trump attempted to spur did not play a major factor in last night's incremental, predicable ratings drop. They're likely to be up overall for the week after Monday night's game, he said.

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