Network trio sweeps Sunday

NFL brings in big numbers for NBC

ABC, NBC and Fox all had something to boast about on the second Sunday of the November sweep, with a strong NFL game carrying NBC to victory on the night among young adults. Football, in the form of an overrun, also helped Fox’s animation lineup score above-average results, while ABC remained potent with its entertainment series.

According to preliminary nationals from Nielsen that include same-day DVR playback, ABC’s “Desperate Housewives” stood as the night’s top show (7.2 rating/16 share in adults 18-49, 18.5 million viewers overall), rising week to week thanks in part to a stronger lead-in from “Extreme Makeover: Home Edition” (5.3/14 in 18-49, 15.1 million viewers overall). And closing out the night in good fashion was “Brothers & Sisters” (5.0/13 in 18-49, 12.5 million viewers overall), which continues to retain more of its “Housewives” lead-in than a year ago.

NBC is expected to win the night thanks to its “Sunday Night Football” contest between the San Diego Chargers and Indianapolis Colts. The down-to-the-wire game, which ended around 11:40 p.m. ET, is projected to deliver roughly a 6.8 rating/17 share and 16.6 million viewers overall.

Earlier in the evening, Fox didn’t get its hoped-for boost from the big NFL game between the Dallas Cowboys and New York Giants, as the contest ran only about 10 minutes into primetime and its conclusion lacked any real drama. Still, the net’s NFL overrun and postgame show averaged a winning 5.5/15 in 18-49 and 13.8 million viewers overall on Fox affiliates from 7 to 8 p.m., leading into a good score for “The Simpsons” at 8 (5.1/13 in 18-49, 10.6 million viewers overall). After “King of the Hill” fell off at 8:30 (3.7/9 in 18-49, 7.7 million viewers overall), “Family Guy” perked up nicely at 9 o’clock (5.4/12 in 18-49, 10.4 million viewers overall), and “American Dad” was above average at 9:30 (4.0/9 in 18-49, 7.9 million viewers overall).

CBS, lacking a football presence, was a distant fourth place in key demos, led by “The Amazing Race” (3.1/8 in 18-49, 10.5 million viewers overall), which dropped off quite a bit from its football-inflated season premiere of the previous week. Also a bit sluggish was “Cold Case” at 9 (3.0/7 in 18-49, 12.9 million viewers overall), while “Shark” (2.6/7 in 18-49, 11.5 million viewers overall) came in about on par with recent outings.

CW continues to be an afterthought on Sundays, with new drama “Life Is Wild” barely registering at 8 o’clock (0.4/1 in 18-49, 1.4 million viewers overall).

Preliminary 18-49 averages for the night: NBC (7:30-11 p.m.), 5.3/13; ABC and Fox, 4.9/12; CBS, 2.8/7; Univision, 1.2/3; CW, 0.5/1.

In total viewers: NBC, 13.5 million; ABC, 13.2 million; CBS, 12.0 million; Fox, 10.7 million; Univision, 2.9 million; CW, 1.3 million.

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