The Simpsons

NBC's 'Sunday Night Football' easily wins night; CBS' 'Amazing Race' posts lowest-rated finale

Fox’s animated comedy lineup had its best showing in a while, and ABC’s “Once Upon a Time” bounced back from its recent series low, but NBC’s “Sunday Night Football” was the easy ratings winner last night.

Preliminary estimates for live events are subject to revision, but the New Orleans Saints’ 31-13 victory over the Carolina Panthers on “Sunday Night Football” averaged a 6.0 rating/15 share in adults 18-49 and 16.6 million viewers overall on NBC’s stations from 8:30 to 11 p.m., with these numbers expected to rise by about 10% in the nationals. This is a below-average result for “SNF,” which didn’t have to face AMC’s “The Walking Dead” for the first time in a while, but it should come in above last week’s New York Giants-Washington Redskins game.

In local markets, the game did a 58.1/73 in New Orleans and a 34.5/48 in Charlotte.

Elsewhere on Sunday, Fox saw its animated comedy lineup draw its highest 8-10 p.m. rating in 18-49 in nearly a year (2.5/6), benefiting from a football overrun as the net’s coverage of the game between the Seattle Seahawks and San Francisco 49ers ended after 7:30 p.m. ET. It also had to help that the “Sunday Night Football” game wasn’t a juggernaut, and there was no “Walking Dead” to devour viewers in the 9 o’clock hour.

The Simpsons” (3.0/8 in 18-49, 6.8 million viewers overall) matched its highest demo rating in more than a year, easily beating its entertainment competition (“Amazing Race” and “Once Upon a Time”). It was followed by “Bob’s Burgers” (2.1/5 in 18-49, 4.6 million viewers overall), which was up about 30% from the previous week when it followed a “Simpsons” repeat. And in the 9 p.m. hour, “Family Guy” (2.6/6 in 18-49, 5.2 million viewers overall) and “American Dad” (2.1/5 in 18-49, 4.3 million viewers overall) combined for roughly 20% week-to-week gains.

“Simpsons” and “Family Guy” should come in as Sunday’s top-rated entertainment programs in 18-49.

CBS opened with a solid showing by “60 Minutes” (2.2/6 in 18-49, 11.4 million viewers overall), though its numbers could be adjusted in the nationals since its preliminary averages include football action in about 10 markets. From 8 to 10 p.m., “The Amazing Race” finished its 23rd edition with its lowest finale score to date (2.1/6 in 18-49, 9.2 million viewers overall), down from last fall’s 2.6 demo rating; in total viewers, Sunday’s finale was in line with its most recent spring-season finale. And at 10 p.m., “The Mentalist” (1.7/4 in 18-49, 9.6 million viewers overall) was above average.

At ABC, “America’s Funniest Home Videos” (1.5/4 in 18-49, 7.0 million viewers overall) hit a season high in 18-49 while drawing its second largest audience of the fall. “Once Upon a Time” followed at 8 (2.2/5 in 18-49, 6.9 million viewers overall), topping its two most recent episodes for its best 18-49 score since Nov. 3. One week from its fall finale, “Revenge” (1.5/4 in 18-49, 6.0 million viewers overall) was in line with its most recent original, while “Betrayal” (0.8/2 in 18-49, 3.1 million viewers overall) matched its low.

Preliminary 18-49 averages for the night: NBC, 4.9/12; Fox, 3.3/8; CBS, 2.0/5; ABC, 1.5/4; Univision, 0.8/2; Telemundo, 0.5/1.

In total viewers: NBC, 13.8 million; CBS, 9.9 million; Fox, 8.5 million; ABC, 5.7 million; Univision, 2.2 million; Telemundo, 1.3 million.

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