This just in from NFL Network, we find that 6.6 million people watched last week’s Scouting Combine which is way up from the 5.2 million that watched last year. I only watch for Rich Eisen running the 40 on the last day, but this is stunning how people just love to watch the prospects for the upcoming season run, jump, throw and lift. We have the press release from the NFL.
RECORD AUDIENCE FOLLOWS 2011 NFL SCOUTING COMBINE ON NFL NETWORK, NFL.COM & NFL MOBILE
A Record 6.6 Million Viewers Watched Combine on NFL Network
9.3 Million NFL.com Combine Videos Viewed — a 50% Increase This Year
76% of “NFL Mobile” Subscribers Watched Video of Combine Events This Year
NFL Network, NFL.com & NFL Mobile Continue Momentum Following Successful 2010 Season
Fans enjoyed 2011 NFL Combine content on different NFL Media platforms in record numbers. A record 6.6 million viewers tuned in to NFL Network’s exclusive coverage of the 2011 NFL Scouting Combine Presented by Under Armour – a 27 percent increase over 2010 (5.2 million viewers) and an 78 percent increase over 2007 (3.7 million viewers), according to The Nielsen Company. There were 9.3 million views of NFL.com Combine videos by fans, a 50 percent increase compared to last year, and users spent 24 percent more time on NFL.com live. NFL.com’s mobile website, m.NFL.com, showed tremendous growth with 289 percent more unique users compared to 2010. In addition, an impressive 76 percent of NFL Mobile subscribers watched video coverage of Combine events.
NFL Network, NFL.com and NFL Mobile’s exclusive coverage of the 2011 NFL Scouting Combine featured four days (Saturday, Feb. 26 – Tuesday, March 1) of workouts, interviews, analysis, breaking news and everything in between.
Sunday’s seven hours of live coverage featuring quarterbacks, running backs and wide receivers was the most-watched Combine telecast of all-time with an average of 406,000 viewers on NFL Network — up 47 percent from last year.
The NFL Scouting Combine is part of NFL Network’s “Path to Primetime” programming leading into the 2011 NFL Draft in April. The Combine viewership follows a successful 2010 season which featured:
- A record 63.4 million viewers watched NFL Network during the 2010 season (9/16/10-2/6/11).
- With a total day average audience year-to-year increase of 16 percent during the season, NFL Network had the highest percentage growth increase of any cable sports network. NFL Network was the third most watched cable sports network behind ESPN and ESPN 2.
Network Ave. Audience Growth ’10 vs. ’09 Viewers (P2+)
NFL Network 16% 163,000
ESPN 12% 1,441,000
ESPNews 6% 68,000
ESPN 2 5 % 384,000
Golf Network 2% 62,000
Versus -15% 82,000
Fox Soccer Channel -15 28,000
Speed Channel -19% 121,000
NBA TV NA 52,000
MLB Network NA 26,000
- NFL Network’s fifth season of Thursday Night Football was the most watched in the network’s history with an average of 5.7 million cable viewers per game.
- A record 27.8 million total viewers watched NFL Network’s NFL GameDay programming on Sundays – an increase of 13 percent over 2009.
- NFL Internet Group, which includes NFL.com and its club sites, posted another record year and continues to be the most popular sports league on the web with an average of 17.1 million unique visitors according to ComScore. The network peaked in December with 26.3 million unique visitors. The popularity of the videos continues to skyrocket as NFL.com’s total video streams grew 128 percent from last year.
- In the first season of NFL Mobile Only, a record number of fans turned to their mobile devices for NFL coverage as NFL Mobile is one of Verizon’s most successful apps.
So based on this, are the NFL owners really thinking of possibly losing a season? People want their football.