National Football League In Ratings Hell -- America Boycotts Scum
The NFL continues to be in denial about the impact of the players' protest and kneeling during the national anthem -- which is only one issue affecting viewership and attendance. The league wants folks to focus on attendance -- the numbers for which are manipulated to make it appear that there is higher attendance than there actually is.
Attendance is a drop in the bucket, however, compared to TV ratings, which is what the NFL Suits are truly concerned about - and will impact negatively on future TV contracts and ultimately player salaries. Also, teams that don't own their stadium, which is most teams, have to split stadium revenue including ticket sales to some extent with the local government/stadium-sports authority entity.
You will not hear the facts from the NFL, the players union, the networks, or for the most part the sports/financial media establishment as each has a vested interested in controlling the narrative, denying the facts, and manipulating the public into believing that all is well and that there unforeseen and outer-galactic forces at work causing the sports public to tune out their product.
The facts are: 1) the NFL has become a boring game with way too many penalties, clock stoppages, timeouts, ads, etc. It is like watching the grass grow; 2) the cable cord-cutters are a huge factor in the decline of ratings, which should be obvious - if one cuts cable, he can't watch ESPN; 3) there are myriad additional entertainment options for folks today compared to the past; 4) Millennials - as with other sectors of life such as voting and politics - are confounding the experts and not conforming as their antecedents did on matters such as the "enjoyment" of watching pro football; and 5) for dessert there is the sewage pie of having grossly-overpaid athletes whine about some public affairs issue that the public go to sports games to get away from, and having the gall to protest on the public's and teams' time our flag, etc, which is an insult to those paying the freight, ie, the public.
Each of these has weighed on the ratings in the past 2-3 years.
Below are some snippets of reports on ratings, which as with such developments tend to snowball over time and will almost certainly continue to drop next year - along with attendance. Add to the above the league's inability to protect its star QBs - eg, Aaron Rodgers, Carson Wentz, David Carr, the snowballing concussion issue - which in my opinion will ultimately be the NFL's undoing and resulting in its eventual sports-compartmentalization as has occurred with boxing. The latter still exists, but not in polite society, so to speak.
Some key metrics from an internal NFL review (see third article from SI) -
"You may have already seen the figures from Nielsen that show an overall decline of 7.5 percent in total viewership, comparing this year's ratings to last year's, which the NFL believed were down from 2015 because of the election. What you didn't see is consistency in how the numbers sunk across the board, something the owners showed concern over inside those meetings rooms. Consider these:
" There are six time-related viewing windows the NFL measures every week. Through six weeks, the NFL's ratings were down in 22 of 36 windows.
" The NFL's average household rating is currently 25.1, down from 26.9 over the same period last year, and the 28.1-28.7 range where it sat from 2013-15.
" Twenty-five of 31 teams (excluding the Chargers, because of the move) are drawing lower local numbers than they did in 2016. Nineteen have dropped 5 percent or more, including brand name teams like the Cowboys (7% drop), Patriots (8%) and Steelers (6%), and both New York clubs (the Giants are down 7%, the Jets are down 37%). Conversely, only three teams (Chiefs, Bucs, Lions) have improved by more than 5 percent.
" Digital streaming numbers are improving, but not at the rate that TV numbers are falling. ESPN counts the stream crowd as 3 percent of its viewership of Monday Night Football, which is the best of all the game-carrying networks."
NFL TV Partners Set To Lose Up To $500 Million On Ratings Decline ...
Nov 16, 2017 - While much of the attention has focused on the protests, according to ongoing conversations with several people close to the league and its television partners over the past couple of months, the ratings decline that will cost the TV partners up to $500 million can actually be attributed to four primary factors.
NFL 2017 ratings decline; National anthem protests | SI.com
Oct 27, 2017 - Despite some people who just flippantly say "the NFL ratings are terrible," the fact is that the league's ratings are down five percent from 2016. NFL games have averaged 15.1 million viewers through Week 7 this season. Last year at this same time, the games averaged 15.87 âmillion viewers.
Declining TV ratings grab attention of NFL owners | SI.com
Oct 19, 2017 - And to explain why, I'll give you the three words that should serve as your guidepost in explaining almost everything NFL: Follow the money. The Cowboys need those ... NFL commissioner Roger Goodell has seen the league's television ratings decline in various categories over the past two years.
NFL Losing Viewers At Alarming Rate But Faces Limits On Its Response
Oct 23, 2017 - The decline in NFL viewership has gone from a little leak to a busted pipe in just a year, and there's not a lot that owners can do. ... owners face some long-term trends that threaten viewership. Many people, particularly millennials, are just not tuning into traditional television nearly as much as past generations did.
NFL TV audience numbers continue to decline early in 2017 season ...
Oct 15, 2017 - The NFL's average TV audience (including Sunday afternoon, Sunday night, Monday night and Thursday night games) slid to 15.156 million viewers ... for eyeballs from cable news, the Oct. 1 massacre in Las Vegas and the changing TV habits of younger, cord-cutting viewers have likely taken a toll as well.
NFL viewership down and study suggests it's over protests (Oct. 2016)
Internal NFL memo sent to address concern as to why ratings this season are so far down 11% ... Over the last 15 years, the memo stated, that NFL viewership overall has increased 27 percent, although total prime-time viewership declined by 36 percent.
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