The Buffalo Bills wrapped up their preseason schedule making Channel 7 much happier than Coach Rex Ryan was late Thursday night.
The four games that don’t count in the standings and used to be referred to as exhibition games, averaged a 23.5 rating and were by far the four highest-rated programs this summer.
The Bills’ bumbling 17-10 loss to Detroit Thursday featuring a large number of players who won’t make the team had a 21.4 rating and was the lowest-rated of the four games this preseason by 0.4 points.
The Bills’ 11-10 victory over Cleveland carried on ESPN and Channel 7 was the highest-rated game of the preseason with a combined rating of 27.2. It also was the highest-rated preseason game in the 15 years that Nielsen has been rating games here by meters.
The four-game average is about a 23 percent gain from the four preseason games that were carried live last season on Channel 7 and averaged a 19.1 rating. A tape-delayed game had a 3.6 rating last year.
The top-rated game last year was the Bills preseason opener with the New York Giants in the Hall of Fame game carried by NBC. Until the Cleveland game, the 26.4 rating on Channel 2 for the Hall of Fame carried on the night Andre Reed was inducted into the Hall of Fame was the highest-rated preseason game in 15 years. A previous report had a Bills-Bears preseason game a decade ago as the highest-rated before this preseason.