ABC’s “Once Upon a Time” opened its fourth season impressively and Fox’s “Family Guy” delivered its best ratings since early 2011 with the show’s crossover event with “The Simpsons” on Sunday, a night that also saw CBS’ “Madam Secretary” fall off from its football-boosted premiere, though it built nicely on its “60 Minutes” lead-in.

NBC, of course, won the opening Sunday of the television season with its NFL “Sunday Night Football” matchup between the New Orleans Saints and Dallas Cowboys. It generated a 13.7 overnight household rating/23 share in Nielsen’s metered-market overnights, up 5% from the 13.0 rating the teams did when they met each other on “SNF” last November.

The game, dominated by the Cowboys, averaged a 7.6 rating/21 share in adults 18-49 and 20.7 million viewers overall on NBC’s stations from 8:30 to 11 p.m., with these numbers expected to rise by more than 10% in the nationals.

The season premiere of “The Simpsons,” benefiting from a big NFL lead-in, averaged a strong 3.9/11 in 18-49 while drawing 8.5 million total viewers, rising 1 full ratings point (34%) over its year-ago season premiere (2.9). This is the 25-year-old show’s best start to the season in three years.

It was followed by the timeslot debut of “Brooklyn Nine-Nine” (2.6/7 in 18-49, 5.4 million viewers overall), which benefited from its hammock slot between “Simpsons” and “Family Guy”; although it lose one-third of its demo lead-in, “Brooklyn” matched the show’s series premiere of last September, doubled its season finale from March and outperformed last year’s “Bob’s Burgers” by 18%.

Airing for an hour, “Family Guy” (4.5/12 in 18-49, 8.4 million viewers overall) was up a monster 73% from its year-ago premiere for its best season-opener score since 2010. It was the night’s No. 1 entertainment series in 18-49, 18-34 and 25-54.

ABC’s season premiere of “Once Upon a Time” (3.4/10 in 18-49, 9.3 million viewers overall) was up about 30% from its year-ago premiere and logged the show’s best 18-49 score since November 2012 — tying with Fox’s comedies for the hour’s 18-49 lead among entertainment series. While the absence of “The Amazing Race” from the timeslot may have freed up some younger viewers, “Once” no doubt was boosted by the show’s “Frozen”-themed storyline — which seemed to invite plenty of family co-viewing. Among viewers under 18, “Once” drew its largest-ever audience (1.603 million).

The 7 p.m. special “Once Upon a Time: Storybrooke Has Frozen Over” (1.5/5 in 18-49, 5.1 million viewers overall) did pretty well too, improving a bit on the “Once” special of a year ago.

“Once Upon a Time” was followed by the second-season premiere of “Resurrection” (2.2/6 in 18-49, 7.6 million viewers overall) and the fourth-season premiere of “Revenge” (1.4/4 in 18-49, 5.3 million viewers overall). “Resurrection” was up a tick from its early May finale but this is a rather uninspired performance given its lead-in. And “Revenge” was not only well down from its 9 p.m. bow of last year, as expected, but also came in a tick below the series debut of “Betrayal” in the timeslot a year ago; it matched its May season finale in 18-49.

At CBS, “60 Minutes” (1.1/4 in 18-49, 9.2 million viewers overall) dropped off sharply from last week when it had the end of the Denver-Seattle football game as a lead-in, and was also down about 20% from last year. That made it harder for “Madam Secretary” in its second week (1.4/4 in 18-49, 12.7 million viewers overall), as it declined by about 30% in 18-49 from its premiere and was down by the same amount in the demo from last year’s “The Amazing Race” in the time period.

Give “Madam Secretary” credit though for building on its low “60 Minutes” lead-in in 18-49 (1.4 vs. 1.1), 25-54 (2.3 vs. 1.8) and total viewers (12.7 million vs. 9.2 million). It also came within 15% of last year’s “Amazing Race” in the older 25-54 demo (2.3 vs. 2.7) while drawing about 4 million total viewers more than the reality show.

“Good Wife” (1.3/4 in 18-49, 11.2 million viewers overall) was down a tick from its season premiere of last week. And capping the night was veteran “CSI” on its new night (1.4/4 in 18-49, 9.7 million viewers overall); it performed similarly to last year’s “The Mentalist,” building slightly on “Good Wife” in 18-49.

There may be some minor adjustments to the CBS numbers due to a late-running football game that pushed back the net’s lineup by about 15 minutes in New York, Chicago and some other markets.

Preliminary 18-49 averages for the night: NBC, 6.1/18; Fox, 4.9/14; ABC, 2.1/6; CBS, 1.3/4.

In total viewers: NBC, 16.2 million; Fox, 11.8 million; CBS, 10.7 million; ABC, 6.8 million.