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Super Bowl rating here is No. 1 in the country, but can't catch last year's OT game

The rating for the Philadelphia Eagles' 41-33 victory over the New England Patriots in Sunday's Super Bowl soared in Western New York, but it was slightly lower than the rating for the Patriots overtime win over Atlanta a year ago.

The 56.4 preliminary rating Sunday on WGRZ-TV(Channel 2) tied with the 2016 Super Bowl win by the Denver Broncos over Carolina, 24-10, for second place in WNY among all Super Bowls played since meters began measuring ratings here in 2000.

The Patriots' overtime win over Atlanta in the 2017 Super Bowl had an all-time WNY high live rating of 57.2 on WUTV, the local Fox affiliate. It grew to a 57.5 after later viewing was added.

That's a live rating decline this year of a little more than 1 percent from a game that went into overtime. WNY had the second-highest rating in the nation for the 2017 game.

Buffalo was the No. 1 TV market in the country for Sunday's game, followed by Philadelphia (56.2) and Boston (55.9).

The NFL hasn't experienced the same ratings decline in WNY as it has across the country this season.

Michaels, Collinsworth have strong, perplexing moments on Super Bowl call

Almost all the WNY audience stayed Sunday for Justin Timberlake's halftime performance. The local rating for the 30-minute halftime break was about 55.7.

The heavily-promoted episode of "This Is Us" that followed the 39.5 rating for NBC's post-game show had a strong 16.7 rating. The "This Is Us" rating is expected to soar after later viewing is added because it started at bedtime for many viewers and some other fans of the show may have been celebrating outside their homes.

Here are some leftover notes about NBC's coverage from my game review posted earlier today.

Best Pregame Picks: NBC studio analysts Tony Dungy and John Harbaugh both picked the Eagles to win on NBC's pregame show, but I doubt they thought it would be because of their offense.

Best Pregame Features: OK, I didn't see all six hours. And this won’t be popular in Buffalo. But New England quarterback Tom Brady was very likable in his interview with Dan Patrick. He came off like a great player, great son and great father and was self-deprecating. But I doubt the feature made anyone in Buffalo root for him.

But my favorite pregame piece was the one that focused on the bond between former Washington Coach Joe Gibbs and Super Bowl quarterback Doug Williams that Dungy put in perspective by noting what Gibbs' faith in Williams meant to future black quarterbacks.

Michele Tafoya also did a strong feature on Hall of Fame Minnesota Vikings Coach Bud Grant, which included his instituting the Viking Formation of lining up players before the national anthem to honor friends he lost in wars.

The Formation reportedly was first on display on Dec. 20, 1975, when the Vikings played at Buffalo in a nationally televised game. I just wish Tafoya had asked Grant his feelings about this year's player protests.


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