“Yellowstone” was the most-watched non-NFL prime-time program for the third time in four weeks, and finished ninth overall, according to live-plus-same-day figures released by Nielsen today.
The neo-Western averaged a combined 8.465 million viewers on Paramount Network and CMT. It trailed three NFL games, four NFL pre-game shows and Fox’s 23-minute NFL postgame show, “The OT.”
Three other non-NFL prime-time programs averaged more than 7 million viewers between Dec. 13 and Sunday — the CBS crime drama “FBI,” 10th for the week averaging 8.309 million viewers; the CBS news magazine “60 Minutes,” 11th, averaging 7.939 million viewers; and the Dec. 13 edition of the NBC singing competition “The Voice,” 12th averaging 7.275 million.
NBC’s “Sunday Night Football” was the most-watched program for the 11th time in the 13-week-old 2021-22 prime-time television season with the New Orleans Saints’ 9-0 victory over the Tampa Bay Buccaneers averaging 18.061 million viewers.
Viewership dropped 2.7% from the 18.563-million average for the previous week’s “Sunday Night Football” game, a 45-30 victory by the Green Bay Packers over the Chicago Bears that averaged 18.563 million viewers.
Sunday’s premiere of the “Yellowstone” origin story “1883” was the week’s most-watched new series, averaging a combined 5.586 million viewers on Paramount Network and CMT, 16th for the week and seventh among non-NFL programs.
Despite airing a rerun, CBS’ “Young Sheldon” was the most-watched comedy for the 11th consecutive week, averaging 4.428 million viewers, 21st for the week and 11th among non-NFL programs.
CBS’ 36-minute”Survivor” after-show was the most-watched prime-time program beginning at 10 p.m, or later, finishing 24th and 14th among non-NFL programs, averaging 3.996 million viewers from 10:24-11 p.m. in most of the nation.
The after-show retained 71.3% of audience of the two-hour, 24-minute “Survivor” season finale which averaged 5.605 million viewers, 17th for the week and eighth among non-NFL programs.
The combination of “Thursday Night Football,” another hour of NFL programming on Sunday and the absence of 10 p.m. non-sports programming made Fox the most-watched network for the fifth time in the season, all in the past eight weeks, averaging 5.7 million viewers for its 16 hours, 20 minutes of prime-time programming.
Fox’s average included the 37-minute runover of its Sunday afternoon NFL coverage, whose viewership figure was not immediately available. The runover is not considered a separate program.
NBC was second, averaging 5.09 million, followed by CBS, which averaged 3.83 million, and ABC, which averaged 3.54 million, all for 22 hours of prime-time programming. The CW averaged 490,000 viewers for its 14 hours of prime-time programming.
Fox’s “Thursday Night Football” telecast of the Los Angeles Chargers’ 34-28 overtime loss to the Kansas City Chiefs was second for the week, averaging 17.863 million viewers. Fox’s most-watched non-NFL program was the season finale of “The Masked Singer,” ninth among non-NFL programs and 18th overall, averaging 5.077 million viewers.
ABC’s portion of the simulcast of the Rams-Arizona Cardinals “Monday Night Football” Dec. 13 was its most-watched program, averaging 7.973 million viewers. The game was responsible for increasing ABC’s viewership 26.9% from its 2.79 million average the previous week.
ABC’s most-watched non-NFL program was the fall finale of “Station 19,” 10th among non-NFL programs and 21st overall, averaging 4.688 million viewers.
The premiere of the NBC comedy “American Auto” was second in its 10-10:30 time slot Dec. 13 behind “Monday Night Football,” averaging 2.95 million viewers, tying for 45th overall and 35th among non-NFL programs.
The premiere of another NBC comedy, “Grand Crew,” was fifth in its 8-8:30 p.m. time slot Dec. 14, averaging 2.352 million viewers, 64th for the week and 54th among non-NFL programs.
The superhero series “The Flash” was The CW’s most-watched program, averaging 717,000 viewers, 153rd among broadcast programs. Its overall rank was not available.
The 20 most watched prime-time programs consisted of four NFL games; five NFL pregame shows; Fox’s 23-minute NFL postgame show, “The OT”; “60 Minutes”; three CBS entertainment programs; two episodes of NBC’s “The Voice”; Fox’s “The Masked Singer”; ABC’s “Station 19”; “Yellowstone” and “1883.”
Despite splitting its audience with ABC, ESPN’s “Monday Night Football” was the most-watched cable program for the 14th time in 14 2021 regular-season broadcasts, with the Rams’ 30-23 victory over the Arizona Cardinals averaging 7.925 million viewers.
Fox News Channel was the most-watched cable network for the third time in five weeks, averaging 2.195 million viewers. ESPN was second, averaging 1.886 million viewers after four first-place finishes in six weeks.
Hallmark Channel was third for the sixth consecutive week, averaging 1.477 million viewers. MSNBC averaged 1.303 million viewers to finish fourth for the sixth time in seven weeks following a fifth-place finish.
CNN was 16th, averaging 650,000 viewers, one week after tying for 15th with AMC, averaging 577,000 viewers. CNN also trailed Paramount Network (1.067 million), Freeform (877,000), HGTV (868,000), TBS (882,000), Food Network (782,000), TLC (774,000), TNT (744,000), Discovery (713,000) History (729,000), USA Network (685,000) and Lifetime (679,000).
The top 20 cable programs consisted of three NFL games; two NFL pregame shows; nine Fox News Channel political talk shows — five broadcasts of “Tucker Carlson Tonight,” three of “Hannity” and one of “The Ingraham Angle”; “Yellowstone”; “1883”; the Hallmark Channel “Countdown to Christmas” movie “`Tis the Season to be Merry”; History’s long-running chronicle of the quest to solve the more than two-century-old treasure mystery on a Canadian island, “The Curse of Oak Island”; the Dec. 15 edition of the MSNBC news and opinion program “The Rachel Maddow Show”; and TNT’s coverage of the Golden State Warriors-New York Knicks game Dec. 14 where Golden State guard Stephen Curry set the NBA career 3-point basket record.
An episode of the Univision telenovela “La Desalmada” was the most-watched prime-time Spanish-language program for the third time in four weeks, with the Tuesday episode averaging 1.750 million viewers, 63rd among broadcast programs. Its overall rank was not available.
Univision was the most-watched Spanish-language network for the 107th consecutive week and 109th time in 110 weeks, averaging 1.34 million viewers. Telemundo was second, averaging 910,000 viewers, followed by UniMas (530,000), Estrella TV (110,000) and Azteca America (40,000).
ABC’s “World News Tonight with David Muir” was the most-watched nightly newscast for the 106th time in 107 weeks and 158th time in 160 weeks, averaging 8.16 million viewers. “NBC Nightly News with Lester Holt” was second, averaging 7.486 million viewers, followed by the “CBS Evening News with Norah O’Donnell,” which averaged 5.09 million viewers.
The week’s 10 most-watched prime-time programs were NBC’s “Sunday Night Football”; Fox’s “Thursday Night Football”; the ABC-ESPN “Monday Night Football” simulcast; NBC’s 10-minute “Sunday Night Football” pre-kickoff show; Fox’s 23-minute NFL postgame show, “The OT”; Fox’s 17-minute “Thursday Night Football” pregame show; the 22-minute third segment of NBC’s “Football Night in America”; the 13-minute ABC-ESPN “Monday Night Football” kickoff show; “Yellowstone”; and CBS’ “FBI.”