The FOX national telecast (mostly Eagles-49ers) topped the charts for the week (September 22-28) with 25.8 million average viewers followed by Saints-Cowboys on NBC’s Sunday Night Football drawing 22.7 million average viewers. The top non-NFL program was CBS’ The Big Bang Theory season premiere which averaged 18.2 million viewers.

Since Labor Day, NFL game telecasts rank as the 12 most-watched shows on television and are the only programs to draw at least 19 million viewers. Locally during premiere week, NFL games topped the ratings in 26 NFL markets:

Program – # of NFL Markets Ranked #1
NFL Football – 26
Big Bang Theory – 3
NCIS – 1

Following is the list of the NFL markets where football was the top-rated program for the week of September 22-28:

Week of 9/22 – 9/28

Market (Game-Date, RTG/SHR, Rank)
New Orleans (Saints at Cowboys-9/28/2014, 47.3-61, 1)
Milwaukee (Packers at Bears-9/28/2014, 42.6-77, 1)
Minneapolis (Falcons at Vikings-9/28/2014, 38.5-71, 1)
Dallas (Saints at Cowboys-9/28/2014, 36.0-52, 1)
Buffalo (Bills at Texans-9/28/2014, 33.5-62, 1)
Pittsburgh (Buccaneers at Steelers-9/28/2014, 33.0-63, 1)
Chicago (Bears at Jets-9/22/2014, 32.1-48, 1)*
Philadelphia (Eagles at 49ers-9/28/2014, 31.9-53, 1)
Indianapolis (Titans at Colts-9/28/2014, 31.8-55, 1)
Baltimore (Panthers at Ravens-9/28/2014, 30.7-60, 1)
San Diego (Jaguars at Chargers-9/28/2014, 30.0-58, 1)
Houston (Bills at Texans-9/28/2014, 27.8-55, 1)
Atlanta (Falcons at Vikings-9/28/2014, 24.2-42, 1)
San Francisco and Oakland (Eagles at 49ers-9/28/2014, 23.9-52, 1)
Charlotte (Panthers at Ravens-9/28/2014, 22.8-45, 1)
Detroit (Lions at Jets-9/28/2014, 22.7-46, 1)
Jacksonville (Jaguars at Chargers-9/28/2014, 21.6-35, 1)
Nashville (Titans at Colts-9/28/2014, 19.7-34, 1)
Tampa (Buccaneers at Steelers-9/28/2014, 19.4-37, 1)
Washington, DC (Giants at Redskins-9/25/2014, 19.3-32, 1)**
Phoenix (Eagles at 49ers-9/28/2014, 17.4-36, 1)
Seattle (Eagles at 49ers-9/28/2014, 16.4-35, 1)
Miami (Dolphins at Raiders-9/28/2014, 15.1-32, 1)(Game in London)
Denver (Packers at Bears-9/28/2014, 13.8-35, 1)
Cleveland (Eagles at 49ers-9/28/2014, 13.4-26, 1)
New York (Giants at Redskins-9/25/2014, 12.1-19, 1)**

* Local affiliate & ESPN combined
** CBS & NFLN combined
Sources: NFL & The Nielsen Company

In other NFL News…

The National Football League announced that the Week 6 New England Patriots at Buffalo Bills game on Sunday, October 12 will be played at 1 p..m. on FOX and the Chicago Bears at Atlanta Falcons game at 4:25 p.m. on FOX.

Following is the final Week 6 NFL schedule. Kansas City and New Orleans are idle this week. (All times EasterN)

Thursday, October 6
Indianapolis at Houston, 8:25 p.m. (CBS and NFL Network)

Sunday, October 12
Chicago at Atlanta, 4:25 p.m. (FOX)
Green Bay at Miami, 1 p.m. (FOX)
New England at Buffalo, 1 p.m. (CBS)
Carolina at Cincinnati, 1 p.m. (FOX)
Pittsburgh at Cleveland, 1 p.m. (CBS)
Detroit at Minnesota, 1 p.m. (FOX)
Denver at New York Jets, 1 p.m. (CBS)
Baltimore at Tampa Bay, 1 p.m. (CBS)
Jacksonville at Tennessee, 1 p.m. (CBS)
San Diego at Oakland, 4:05 p.m. (CBS)
Washington at Arizona, 4:25 p.m. (FOX)
Dallas at Seattle, 4:25 p.m. (FOX)
New York Giants at Philadelphia, 8:30 p.m. (NBC)

Monday, October 13
San Francisco at St. Louis, 8:30 p.m. Monday on ESPN

The NFL uses “flexible scheduling” to ensure quality matchups in all NFL Sunday time slots and to give teams a chance to play their way onto primetime and into the late-afternoon 4:25 p.m. Eastern time slot on CBS or FOX.

For the first time, flexible scheduling may be applied in Weeks 5-10. During that period, flexible scheduling can be used in no more than two weeks by shifting a Sunday afternoon game into primetime and moving the Sunday night game to an afternoon start time.

Also, for the first time, a select number of games are being “cross-flexed,” moving between CBS and FOX to bring potentially under-distributed games to wider audiences.

The NFL will continue to use flexible scheduling on Sundays in Weeks 11-17. For each flexible scheduling week with the exception of Week 17, the NFL announces the start times of games on Sundays no later than 12 days prior to that weekend.  To ensure a Sunday night game and doubleheader games with playoff implications in Week 17, flexible scheduling decisions for that Sunday can be made on six days notice.

For ticket information, fans may visit http://www.nfl.com/tickets.

More NFL News…

The National Football League and DIRECTV have extended and expanded DIRECTV’s exclusive rights to carry NFL SUNDAY TICKET and its package of every Sunday afternoon out-of-market game through a new multi-year agreement.

The new agreement also expands DIRECTV’s rights to stream NFL SUNDAY TICKET live on mobile devices and via broadband, known as NFL SUNDAY TICKET.TV, as previously announced.

Specific terms of the agreement were not disclosed.

Under the new pact, DIRECTV will also continue to broadcast its RED ZONE CHANNEL and its new DIRECTV FANTASY ZONE channel that debuted this season. In addition, DIRECTV and the NFL also extended their NFL Network distribution relationship with DIRECTV to offer its customers TV Everywhere access to NFL Network anytime, anywhere on virtually any device.

“We are pleased to continue our partnership with DIRECTV,” said NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell. “DIRECTV and NFL SUNDAY TICKET have served our fans well for 20 years and continue to complement our broadcast television packages. We also appreciate DIRECTV’s commitment to NFL Network, which it has carried since the channel launched in 2003.”

“This new agreement is a testament to the terrific long-term relationship we have with the NFL and its millions of fans across the country,” said Mike White, chairman, president and CEO of DIRECTV.  “NFL SUNDAY TICKET has always been the centerpiece of DIRECTV’s sports leadership and we’re pleased to continue our relationship with the NFL and be a part of the league’s future growth and success.”

Under the new NFL SUNDAY TICKET agreement, DIRECTV will continue to offer all out-of-market Sunday afternoon games in HD. DIRECTV customers who purchase NFL SUNDAY TICKET MAX will also have access to the online/mobile service to watch their games on virtually any device; a Game Mix channel with up to eight games on one screen; both the RED ZONE CHANNEL and new DIRECTV FANTASY ZONE channel; and Short Cuts, which offers replays of each Sunday game in 30 commercial-free minutes.

The new DIRECTV FANTASY ZONE channel is devoted entirely to fantasy football and fields a team of fantasy experts offering real-time game-to-game fantasy analysis and statistics powered by NFL.com Fantasy.

About DIRECTV
DIRECTV (NASDAQ: DTV) is one of the world’s leading providers of digital television entertainment services delivering a premium video experience through state-of-the-art technology, unmatched programming and industry leading customer service to more than 38 million customers in the U.S. and Latin America. In the U.S., DIRECTV offers its over 20 million customers access to more than 195 HD channels and Dolby-Digital® 5.1 theater-quality sound, access to exclusive sports programming such as NFL SUNDAY TICKET™, Emmy-award winning technology and higher customer satisfaction than the leading cable companies for 14 years running. DIRECTV Latin America, through its subsidiaries and affiliated companies in Brazil, Mexico, Argentina, Venezuela, Colombia, and other Latin American countries, leads the pay TV category in technology, programming and service, delivering an unrivaled digital television experience to more than 18 million customers. DIRECTV sports and entertainment properties include two Regional Sports Networks (Rocky Mountain and Pittsburgh) and minority ownership interests in Root Sports Northwest and Game Show Network. For the most up-to-date information on DIRECTV, please visit http://www.directv.com.

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