TVB: NFL Viewers Choose Local Stations Over ESPN, NFL NetworkLocal TV Stations Outpaced Cable Nets by 74% for National Game Simulcasts 1/29/2013 3:37 PM Eastern
For ESPN's Monday Night Football package and NFL Net's Thursday Night Football slate, each network was required to provide a live feed of the participating teams' games to the respective local broadcast TV station partner (usually an ABC affiliate for ESPN games). Local market simulcasts occurred 60 times during the 2012 regular season, and the attendant stations attracted nearly 4.5 times more household viewers.
In the 30 markets where a regular-season game was simulcast on both local TV and one of the cable nets, the average household broadcast rating exceeded the cable network rating by 74%. The top five markets where this occurred were: Milwaukee (351% higher TV station ratings than cable); Minneapolis (+261%); Cleveland (+212%); New Orleans (+212%) and St. Louis (+211%).
The markets of the two Super Bowl teams were sixth (Baltimore) and 13th (San Francisco-Oakland-San Jose).