NBC's telecast of the New England Patriots versus Pittsburgh Steelers averaged a 17.7 household rating and 30 share in the 56 Nielsen metered markets, matching the highest NFL Kickoff telecast ever (Vikings-Saints in 2010).
With extra interest surrounding Patriots quarterback Tom Brady's legal issues centered on the so-called Deflategate scandal, the game was up 5% over last year. NBC and its NFL coverage averaged an 8.8/29 rating in adults 18-49, trailed by CBS with a 1.3/4, ABC with a 0.6/2, Fox with a 0.5/2 and CW with a 0.2/1.
CBS' Big Brother slipped a tenth to a 1.9, while the Under the Dome series finale averaged 4.26 million viewers for a 0.8.
Fox’s Boom! earned a 0.5, down two-tenths from its last original.
The CW’s Beauty and the Beast finale was flat at a 0.2.