There were many blowouts on Super Wild Card Weekend. But to the football-watching masses, the Bills’ shellacking of the Patriots was the least interesting.
Patriots-Bills drew 26.4 million viewers nationally Saturday, according to Sports TV Ratings. That made it the least-watched game of the weekend, just behind Raiders-Bengals, which attracted 27.7 million viewers Saturday afternoon.
Unsurprisingly, the most-watched game was 49ers-Cowboys. The contest peaked at 50.2 million viewers and drew 41.5 million viewers overall. It was the highest-rated Wild Card game in seven years.
It’s not shocking Patriots-Bills failed to draw big numbers, considering the game was over by the end of the first half. Buffalo took a 27-0 lead and never looked back.
But the ratings slip speaks to where the Patriots now reside in the national conscience. More than 31 million people tuned in to see the Titans upset New England on Wild Card Weekend in 2019, which also happened to be Tom Brady’s final game with the Patriots. That affair was played on Saturday night as well.
Overall, six regular season contests garnered higher ratings than Patriots-Bills, including Brady’s return to Gillette Stadium (27.2 million viewers).
Of course, it’s always important to put ratings numbers in perspective. For example: the NBA Finals averaged 4.25 million viewers last season.
Even a horrible NFL playoff game played in horrible conditions draws more than six times the audience as the NBA Finals. Football is king, even if the Patriots aren’t.