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Bills game has big rating to get season average to tie 2016

The Buffalo Bills' 22-16 victory over the Miami Dolphins Sunday was the second highest-rated game of the season and enabled the team's TV ratings for the season that ended the 17-year playoff drought to finish the same as they were a year ago.

The game had a preliminary 43.1 rating on WIVB-TV (Channel 4), the local CBS affiliate, despite competing with New Year's Eve celebrations. That was two points higher than the 37-16 loss to New England on Christmas Eve a week earlier and almost a point higher than the Bills' 24-16 win over Miami on Dec. 17.

A rating point signifies how many households are tuned to a program.

The Bills' 13-7 victory over Indianapolis in the snow on Dec. 10 is the season's highest rating at 46.7.

The Bills ended the regular season averaging a 38.1 rating, exactly the same as the 38.1 average for the 2016 season despite all the negativity surrounding the NFL this season.

Sunday's wild card playoff game with the Jacksonville Jaguars on Channel 4 will be the first postseason game measured here since meters came to Buffalo in the year 2000. It figures to get a rating in the 50s, which is what Super Bowls have been getting here since meters came to Western New York.

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