While my interest in football doesn’t extend beyond the spectacle that is the Super Bowl, which is less about football for me, as it is about the commercials, half-time show and an excuse to eat buffalo wings, I was very much aware of the Giants game last night, even before today's ratings were posted. This is likely due in large part to my being from the lower region of New York State, and thus, having a Facebook friend-list that contains more than a few Giants fans. Following the game (game spoiler alert ahead!), my wall was a fast and celebratory flurry of enthusiastic updates from friends and family declaring their excitement over the Giants’ victory over the Cowboys. I suspect people from the Dallas area had less enthusiastic updates flooding their wall.

The ratings are in for the game and it would be an understatement to say that a lot of people tuned in to watch the Giants defeat the Cowboys. According to Deadline, NBC posted a 17.1 rating for the game, which makes it the highest overnight rating in the six-year history of Sunday Night Football, and the best overnight rating for any Sunday or Monday primetime football NFL game since the Broncos-Dolphins game, which aired on ABC back in 1998 (and earned a 17.4). Deadline does note that the Thursday night NFL openers from the last two years (2010, 2011) still beat out last night’s game with 17.7 and 17.2 respectively. And it might also be fair to note that there wasn’t much on last night, aside from reruns, though it seems likely that a genuine interest in the game is to be credited for the viewer turnout, more so than people watching football because there was nothing else on.

Photo by Kathy Willens, AP Photo

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