A rematch of the Super Bowl brought in a massive audience, making it the most-watched TV broadcast since the Super Bowl itself. The Philadelphia Eagles’ 21-17 victory over the Kansas City Chiefs attracted over 29 million viewers across all platforms, marking the largest Monday Night Football audience in 27 years. The last time MNF drew a bigger audience was in November 1996, when 31.5 million people tuned in to watch the Dallas Cowboys defeat the Green Bay Packers.
This game delivered the highest viewership of any NFL game so far this season, and it is expected that this record will only stand for a few days. The late afternoon game on Thanksgiving has averaged over 30 million viewers in eight of the past nine years. The previous season high was 27.14 million viewers for Fox’s late afternoon national broadcast on Nov. 5.
The Super Bowl rematch aired on various channels including ABC, ESPN, ESPN2, ESPN Deportes, and streaming services ESPN+ and NFL+. ABC had the largest share of the audience with 15.55 million viewers, while ESPN had 11.49 million and ESPN2’s “Manningcast” drew just over 1.9 million.
For the season so far, Monday Night Football — which has simulcast games on ABC for all but two weeks (when the network and ESPN carried separate games) — is averaging about 16.65 million viewers per week, a 26 percent jump over the same point last season. The addition of ABC for the full season has fueled much of the growth, though Monday’s ESPN audience by itself was ahead of the same week in 2022.
The growing popularity of NFL games, especially marquee matchups like the Super Bowl rematch, is indicative of the enduring appeal of the sport. With viewership numbers consistently on the rise, it is clear that football remains a major draw for fans across the country. Additionally, the accessibility of games across multiple platforms, including traditional television and various streaming services, has contributed to the surge in viewership.
Given the success of this Super Bowl rematch in drawing in a massive audience, it is likely that the NFL will continue to capitalize on highly anticipated games and matchups to maintain and potentially even grow its viewership in the future. As sports broadcasting continues to evolve with the changing media landscape, the NFL’s ability to adapt and reach audiences across various platforms will be crucial in maintaining its position as one of the most-watched and beloved sports leagues in the world.