Coverage of the National Football League Draft Saturday and Sunday on ESPN and ESPN2 drew the highest ratings and most viewers in the 27 years ESPN has been airing the event.
ESPN said its eight hours of day-one coverage Saturday was seen in an average of 4.225 million households, up 10% from the previous record of 3.844 million, set last year. It earned a 4.7 Nielsen Media Research rating, up 9% from a 4.3 in 2005. The network added that the first five-and-a-half hours earned a 5.2, up 21% from last year.
According to the total-sports network, 36.336 million people tuned in to at least part of the 17-plus hours of coverage on ESPN and ESPN2.
As far as the Internet, ESPN.com’s homepage (espn.go.com) and NFL section (sports.espn.go.com/nfl) combined for a nearly 11% share of all online sports traffic Saturday and more than a 10.5% share Sunday, ESPN said.