By Alan Pergament
Judging by the rating for the Buffalo Bills' 27-20 loss to the New York Jets Sunday, WNYers wanted to believe in their National Football League team.
The game averaged a 39.7 rating on Channel 4, which was the highest for a Bills game in almost six years. The last 15 minutes of the game had a Super Bowl-like rating of 45.2.
For the game, 58 percent of WNY households with a TV on were watching Jets quarterback Geno Smith shred the Bills' secondary. For the last 15 minutes, 61 percent were tuned in hoping for Bills quarterback EJ Manuel to lead the Bills to a tying touchdown that never came.
The lead-in for the Bills game drove the ratings for the CBS broadcast of television's Emmy Awards to its highest local rating in eight years. The Emmys averaged a 17.0 rating on Channel 4, about 60 percent higher than the 10.7 rating last year's Emmy telecast had on Channel 7, the local ABC affiliate. It was about 150 percent higher than the 6.9 the Emmys had on local Fox affiliate WUTV in 2011.
The high rating came despite the fact the Emmys were playing opposite the semifinal episode of "Breaking Bad," which won the Emmy for best drama, and the series finale of Showtime's "Dexter."
Sunday's "Breaking Bad" episode had a 3.3 local rating, which was about 20 percent of what the Emmys averaged. Of course, "Bad" will get a good ratings boost from all the viewers who watch it after DVRing it or who watch it On Demand. Like me.
Most viewers clearly voted to watch a live awards show over a drama that can be watched later at their convenience. However, the local live rating for "Bad" was slightly higher than it was a week earlier.