Looks like Taylor Swift didn’t ruin the NFL after all

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Maybe talk of the decline of the NFL at the hands of Taylor Swift and the Deep State were premature. CBS announced Monday that their Super Bowl LVIII broadcast drew 123.4 million average viewers across all platforms. The broadcast metrics included audiences that watched on CBS, Paramount+, Nickelodeon, Univision, and CBS Sports.

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With a reported 120 million viewers tuning into the main CBS broadcast, Super Bowl LVIII was the largest-ever audience for a single network. CBS set additional records for the most-streamed Super Bowl in history and for drawing more than 200 million viewers to watch “all or part” of the game.

The NFL has long been the king of ratings in the United States. In 2023, 93 of the top 100 most-watched TV broadcasts in the U.S. were NFL games. That number is up from 2022, which flexed an already-massive market share of 82 of the top 100 U.S. broadcasts.

Super Bowls also dominate the most-watched broadcasts in U.S. history — 29 of the top 30 broadcasts of all-time are Super Bowls, with the lone exception being the M*A*S*H finale in 1983. Each of the top 10 broadcasts has happened since 2010, with Super Bowl LVIII clearing out last year’s Super Bowl by just over 8 million viewers.

There had been plenty of ridiculous criticism of Swift’s relationship with Chiefs tight end Travis Kelce and its effect on the game and league, writ large. None of the conspiracies appear to have come true, though, as the only hurdle left for the NFL to conquer might be the moon landing. The landmark 1969 event is tough to track, with the event taking place across multiple networks. Networks estimate viewership for Neil Armstrong’s moonwalk drew anywhere from 125 to 150 million people. 

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