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Easy Victory for the Chicago Bears vs. Dallas Cowboys on NBC’s ‘Sunday Night Football’

CBS Competitive, but ABC and Fox Off...but Not Necessarily Running

What follows are the fast affiliate results for Sunday, September 25 broken out by network and by each half-hour.

-Total Viewers:
NBC: 15.41 million, CBS: 12.98, ABC: 3.59, Fox: 2.92

-Adults 18-49:
NBC: 5.5 rating/18 share, CBS: 2.6/ 8, Fox: 1.2/ 4, ABC: 0.9/ 3


Sunday Night Football, 60 Minutes (CBS)

-Honorable Mention:
NCIS: Los Angeles (CBS)

The Simpsons (Fox), Family Guy (Fox)

Bob’s Burgers (Fox), Once Upon a Time (ABC), Son of Zorn (Fox), Secrets and Lies (ABC), The Last Man on Earth (Fox), Quantico (ABC)


7:00 p.m.

ABC – Once Upon a Time (retrospective)
Viewers: 3.12 million (#3), A18-49: 0.6/ 2 (#4)

CBS – NFL Football
Viewers: 20.43 million (#1), A18-49: 5.8/21 (#1)

NBC – Football Night in America, part one
Viewers: 6.66 million (#2), A18-49: 1.9/ 7 (#2)

Fox – Family Guy (R)
Viewers: 2.95 million (#4), A18-49: 1.1/ 4 (#3)


7:30 p.m.

ABC – Once Upon a Time (retrospective)
Viewers: 3.12 million (#3), A18-49: 0.6/ 2 (#4)

CBS – 60 Minutes (season premiere)
Viewers: 18.62 million (#1), A18-49: 5.8/21 (#1)

NBC – Football Night in America, part two
Viewers: 8.85 million (#2), A18-49: 1.9/ 7 (#2)

Fox – Bob’s Burgers (season premiere)
Viewers: 2.98 million (#4), A18-49: 1.1/ 4 (#3)


8:00 p.m.

ABC – Once Upon a Time (season premiere)
Viewers: 3.82 million (#2), A18-49: 1.2/ 4 (#4)

CBS – 60 Minutes (season premiere)
Viewers: 14.55 million (#2), A18-49: 2.7/ 9 (#2)

NBC – Football Night in America, part three
Viewers: 14.66 million (#1), A18-49: 5.3/17 (#1)

Fox – The Simpsons (season premiere)
Viewers: 3.67 million (#4), A18-49: 1.6/ 5 (#3)


8:30 p.m.

ABC – Once Upon a Time (season premiere)
Viewers: 3.96 million (#2), A18-49: 1.2/ 4 (#3t)

CBS – NCIS: Los Angeles (season premiere)
Viewers: 12.45 million (#2), A18-49: 1.9/ 6 (#2)

NBC – Football Night in America, part three
Viewers: 20.41 million (#1), A18-49: 7.3/23 (#1)

Fox – Son of Zorn (time period premiere)
Viewers: 2.82 million (#4), A18-49: 1.2/ 4 (#3t)


9:00 p.m.

ABC – Secrets and Lies (season premiere)
Viewers: 4.04 million (#3), A18-49: 1.0/ 3 (#4)

CBS – NCIS: Los Angeles (season premiere)
Viewers: 10.39 million (#2), A18-49: 1.5/ 4 (#2)

NBC – Sunday Night Football (Chicago Bears at Dallas Cowboys)
Viewers: 20.64 million (#1), A18-49: 7.5/23 (#1)

Fox – Family Guy (season premiere)
Viewers: 2.89 million (#4), A18-49: 1.4/ 4 (#4)


9:30 p.m.

ABC – Secrets and Lies (season premiere)
Viewers: 4.06 million (#3), A18-49: 1.0/ 3 (#4)

CBS – NCIS: Los Angeles (season premiere)
Viewers: 10.11 million (#2), A18-49: 1.5/ 4 (#2)

NBC – Sunday Night Football (Chicago Bears at Dallas Cowboys)
Viewers: 19.50 million (#1), A18-49: 7.0/21 (#1)

Fox – The last Man on Earth (season premiere)
Viewers: 2.21 million (#4), A18-49: 0.9/ 3 (#4)


10:00 p.m.

ABC – Quantico (season premiere)
Viewers: 3.72 million (#3), A18-49: 1.0/ 3 (#3)

CBS – NCIS: Los Angeles
Viewers: 9.14 million (#2), A18-49: 1.4/ 4 (#2)

NBC – Sunday Night Football (Chicago Bears at Dallas Cowboys)
Viewers: 16.83 million (#1), A18-49: 6.3/20 (#1)


10:30 p.m.

ABC – Quantico (season premiere)
Viewers: 3.50 million (#3), A18-49: 0.9/ 3 (#3)

CBS – NCIS: Los Angeles
Viewers: 8.11 million (#2), A18-49: 1.3/ 4 (#2)

NBC – Sunday Night Football (Chicago Bears at Dallas Cowboys)
Viewers: 15.71 million (#1), A18-49: 5.9/21 (#1)

Source: Nielsen Media Research

Written by Marc Berman

Marc Berman

Marc Berman has been writing professionally since 1999 and is the author of the “Mr. Television” for Campaign US ( Most recently, Berman was the creator and Editor-in-Chief of website and newsletter TV Media Insights for Cross MediaWorks. From 1999-2011, he was the Senior Editor for Mediaweek and has also written for The New York Daily News, Variety, The Hollywood Reporter and Emmy Magazine, among others. Berman has also appeared on “Entertainment Tonight,” “Extra,” “Access Hollywood,” “Inside Edition,” “The CBS Evening News,” E!, CNN, CNBC, Fox News and MSNBC.

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    Sunday Night (9/25/16) – ABC Total Viewer and Adult 18-49 Projections
    Once Upon a Time: L3 = 5.2 million/1.8 rating and L7 = 5.5 million/2.0 rating
    Secrets & Lies: L3 = 5.2 million/1.4 rating and L7 = 5.7 million/1.5 rating
    Quantico: L3 = 5.6 million/1.5 rating and L7 = 6.1 million/1.7 rating

    Fast Affiliate Live + Same Day Results:

    ABC Sunday Prime (7-11pm – 3.6 million and 0.9/3 in AD18-49): Opposite a big Sunday Night Football game on NBC and an NFL overrun-boosted CBS, ABC outdrew its non-sports competition on Fox Sunday night by 24% in Total Viewers (3.6 million vs. 2.9 million).

    Once Upon a Time (8-9pm – 3.9 million and 1.2/4 in AD18-49): Doubling its lead-in at 8pm (+100% over a Once Upon a Time recap special) against the start of SNF and CBS’ NFL-ignited 60 Minutes, ABC’s Once Upon a Time premiere held even with its May finale (on 5/15/16) among Adults 18-49 (1.2/4) and jumped 43% with Teens 12-17 to deliver its highest rating since its winter finale in December – since 12/6/15. TV Playback: Last season, Once Upon a Time spiked +50% among Adults 18-49 from L+SD to L+3 (to a 2.1 rating) and by +64% in L+7 (to a 2.3 rating).

    Secrets & Lies (9-10pm – 4.1 million and 1.0/3 in AD18-49): At 9pm in Total Viewers (4.1 million) and Adults 18-49 (1.0/3), Secrets & Lies opened with ABC’s scripted numbers in the time period since November – since 11/15/15. Secrets and Lies built on its Once Upon a Time lead-in by 5% in Total Viewers (4.1 million vs. 3.9 million).

    Quantico (10-11pm – 3.6 million and 1.0/3 in AD18-49): At 10pm, ABC’s Quantico premiere held even with its May finale in Adults 18-49 (1.0/3), which matched the show’s top rating since April – since 4/10/16. TV Playback: Last season, Quantico saw its Live+SD rating jump +100% in Adults 18-49 (+1.3 rating) after 7 days of TV playback, making the ABC drama the #1 broadcast gainer of the 2015-16 season.



    “NCIS: Los Angeles” Up +18% in Viewers and +17% in A18-49 Vs. Year Ago Premier

    · From 8:00-9:00 PM, 60 MINUTES averaged 13.50m, 2.3 in A18-49 and 3.2 in A25-54, Sunday’s most watched non-sports program.

    · From 9:00-11:00 PM, the season premiere of NCIS: LOS ANGELES averaged 9.44m (up +18% from 7.98m last season in its Monday time period), 1.4 in A18-49 (+17% from 1.2) and 2.0 in A25-54 (up +5% from 1.9).

    · Note: Due to late running football, the start of CBS primetime was delayed 51 minutes in Eastern/Central time zones. Ratings are tentative and subject to change.

  3. Sunday means football and little else…

    NBC: SNF never disappoints.

    CBS: Inflated numbers are not up for analysis…but the holding power of NCIS:LA throughout the last hour is good. I think the 10:30pm spot for CBS should say MacGyver not NCIS:LA….it will be interesting to see what that show gets as its a repeat.

    FOX: Bob’s Burger looked very soft and LMOE looked very, very weak…not a good sign. Simpsons though looked solid and FG appeared off its game. SOZ was down but better than either BB or LMOE. I like this show and hopefully it can hold up. All in all a very inconsistent night for FOX

    ABC: A night of disaster, OUAT is very weak and S&L/Quantico make that show look solid….ABC Sunday’s are on par with ABC Friday’s, that said it may get real ugly for the alphabet this season.

  4. Weekly Review of the Ratings for Premier week are a mixed bag, please note that anything can change as the season is so new, potholes can develop and some nights may just shore-up for a net

    ABC: Premier week has been uneven for ABC, one night was decent (Weds)

    The Good: The Goldberg’s held up and Speechless was well sampled, but the biggest difference on this night was Designated Survivor which performed well and may just dominate the hour if it holds up

    The Bad: Thursday nights much hyped new show Notorious is a disaster and could take HTGAWM with it…Friday and Sunday are at deaths door while Tuesdays performance of AOS was downright pathetic.

    Results: ABC is in trouble this season, worse than last season IMO

    CBS: Fairly level

    The Good: Kevin Can Wait/Bull/MacGuyver all had solid permiers lifting 3 nights, NCIS:LA held up well on Sundays while Survivor still is a force to reckon with on Wednesdays….not bad

    The Bad: Nothing really…

    Results: This idea of premiering shows sporadically throughout the fall is giving CBS an edge, lets see if it lasts

    FOX: Potholes everywhere

    The Good: Many of their established shows premiered fairly close to where they left off last season…Empire is still the top show

    The Bad: Many of their established shows premiered fairly close to where they left off last season….no I’m not being redundant, its the truth….while holding up their numbers for last year were downright pathetic. The Exorcist premiered poorly and Tuesdays are a mess.

    Results: Like ABC this net will be in trouble this season

    NBC: Better than most of us thought

    The Good: This is Us debuted well and the Voice held up, Thursdays look better than last season and SNF is here to save NBC as usual

    The Bad: TGP took a tumble from Monday to Thursday, Thursdays while steady is still weak (like Weds) and vulnerable.

    Results: Could go either way for NBC this season, as for now they have started out well

    • Good analysis. Week two will be interesting to see if some of those new shows’ numbers hold up even with the 15-20% drop rule or if they collapse. I think that NBC might be in trouble after football. ABC has a lot of holes to fill. Fox is just a mess.

      • And ole’ boring CBS will more than likely be the winner…darn them for not being “creative” 🙂

        SNF saved NBC period….that and 4-5 hours of the Voice on a weekly basis.

        • The problem is that none of the networks are creative in any way… CBS still coasts on doing the right thing for longer than the others.

          They still need to find new hits and only Bull looks like a possibility (but I’m not optimistic it’ll hold).

  5. This is going to be one long year for all of the non-NBC networks on Sundays and a lot of this is the networks own doing. The fact that this is the first Sunday of the new season and nothing outside of NCIS: LA and The Simpsons is a brutal sign of what’s to come.

    Obviously Sunday is football night and even with the Chicago CareBears on embarrassing themselves in primetime again the game still did very well and btw the Lions are going to get back on track by extending the streak against the Bears to 7 games. #GoLions

    Keeping it with football here you see how well the 7pm overrun games do and yet these networks continue to squander the lead-in with programs that don’t need it. For FOX I think Marc label The Simpsons and Family Guy perfectly as tired because that’s what those two programs are and this animation lineup is played out and needs to move to Tuesdays sooner or later. FOX needs this night to promote their new offerings and run specials. Like Rocky Horror Picture Show is getting shown on a Thursday when it could’ve aired on Sundays but this damn animation lineup is in the way. It actually pisses me off because this is one of the main reasons why FOX is no longer a big 3 network. You have the NFL as your lead-in for at least around 10 weeks of the season which includes playoffs and you’ve been wasting it on a lineup that’s died down and been around for 25 years. Ever since the NFL came to FOX in 1994 you’ve had The Simpsons on Sundays.

    Bob’s Burgers should’ve never came back, move the crap to cable if it really needs to be run for syndication purposes. Good to see more crap like Son of Zorn just fail hard on FOX. FOX better outright cancel this stinker, I was embarrassed to see promos being played for it during NFL games earlier in the afternoon one of the weirdest TV shows ever made. Last Man on Earth is a complete dud. I’ll give Family Guy credit for an old show for hanging in there but that’s tired too.

    That NCIS: LA move to Sundays may work for CBS but we’ll still have to see but great results for the Sunday premiere. We know it would’ve done better if it would’ve aired immediately after the NFL instead of a whole hour after 60 Minutes.

    As far as ABC goes this night is dead for them, I can’t believe losers like Quantico came back for another season. Nobody’s watching that crap at all, the whole night is a stinker and OUAT has aged completely on them. Looks it might be a show that’s on its last legs it had a great run though especially a few years ago. Secrets and Lies hadn’t aired for over a year now and the ratings show it, people forgot about it.

    I’m not sure what ABC could do here, I think Designated Survivor should’ve aired here but honestly ABC needs to get away from original series on Sundays and build back up their movie division and get back to the TV Movie of the Week anthology series. Maybe they can produce some mini-series and buy up a bunch of cheap Canadian produced Lifetime movies to air in between weeks. I would guarantee you it would score better but probably older-skew but based on what Lifetime does on Saturday nights I don’t see it doing too bad for them. If they don’t want to go that route go back to the game shows full-time they didn’t do too bad against the Olympics from what I remember so they might not do bad against Sunday Night Football which does around the same numbers as week 2 of the Olympics.

    • Totally agree with you on Bob’s Burgers. It’s a show that never gained an audience, yet FOX keeps re-launching it every year in hopes it’ll catch on. Cronyism at its worst…

      Also totally agree on Quantico. It was a massive flop and Channing Dungey renewing it showed they’d picked the wrong executive (not that anyone picks the winners these days…)

      • FOX annoys the most out of any network because they keep their bums on the air too long and it’s an insult to those of us like me and you who don’t fall for flops.

        Quantico should’ve went with Blood & Oil and you’re 100% right about Channing Dungey she is the wrong person for the job and I don’t believe ABC is getting any better under her watch. Her hire seems to be a PR move anyways so that ABC can say they hired the first black TV President.

        • I think you are right about Dungey’s hire. They wanted a “shattering the glass ceiling” moment.

          I also think they got a pliable person who is going to do what she’s told. After all, her first moves were to renew everything that was already there, so I may be harsh to criticize her. She may be a figurehead at this juncture.

          As for FOX, if I wanted to destroy the network, I’d do what they’re doing. There is no logic to any of their moves.

          Wasn’t Blood & Oil rated higher than Quantico?



    11 Million Viewers — Largest Average Premiere Week Audience for

    Any Network in 5 Years

    10 Million Viewers+ — All Three New Series — “Bull,” “Kevin Can Wait” and “MacGyver” Open to More than 10 Million Viewers

    15.5 Million Viewers — “Bull,” TV’s #1 New Drama

    11 Million Viewers — “Kevin Can Wait,” TV’s #1 New Comedy

    10.9 Million Viewers — “MacGyver,” CBS’s Best Friday Time Period Premiere in 11 Years

    11 CBS Series Will Average Over 10 Million Viewers, More than Other

    Broadcast Networks Combined

    20 Million Viewers — “The Big Bang Theory” Live + 3-Day Audience

    19 Million Viewers — “Bull” Live + 3-Day Audience

    19 Million Viewers — “NCIS” Live + 3- Day Audience

    CBS on Track to Post its Largest Premiere Week Margin of Victory since 2012

    CBS has opened the 2016/2017 season with a MASS-ive premiere week victory, winning for the eighth consecutive year with an average audience of 11 million viewers, the largest opening week audience by any network in five years (Nielsen preliminary live plus same day ratings, live + 3-day ratings and CBS Estimates). Updated ratings for the week ending Sept. 25 will be released tomorrow.

    With 11 series averaging more than 10 million viewers (more than all the broadcast networks combined), CBS is on track to posts its largest premiere week margin of victory since 2012 (+2.05m).

    CBS hit a ratings trifecta with its new series premieres as all three of its freshman series—BULL, KEVIN CAN WAIT and MACGYVER— delivered more than 10 million viewers with live plus same day viewing.

    BULL will rank as television’s #1 new drama with a live plus same day premiere audience of 15.5 million viewers, which jumped to 19.4 million viewers with live + 3-day viewing. KEVIN CAN WAIT will rank as television’s #1 new comedy with a debut audience of 11 million viewers, which increased to 13 million viewers with live +3-day. MACGYVER opened with 10.9 million viewers, CBS’s best Friday (8:00-9:00 PM) premiere in 11 years.

    Among the network’s returning series, THE BIG BANG THEORY averaged 15.82 million viewers, increasing to 20.3 million viewers with live + 3-day viewing while NCIS (the week’s #1 scripted program) opened with 16.00 million viewers, growing to 19.2 million viewers with live + 3-day.


    • The margin is more a factor of the liquefaction of the other networks than any particular strength of CBS…

  7. ABC better think of something quick for Sunday. They need to announce that Once Upon a Time is ending soon. It’s already doing bad and if they don’t end it soon, it will go out with a whimper.

    Quantico premiere I enjoyed. Going with a CIA theme instead of FBI this time around

  8. All the renewed flops flopped again to general surprise rippling throughout Hollywood!! 😉

    Quantico in particular shows the wisdom of Channing Dungey.

    Special mention to Last Man on Earth which splattered majestically to the shock of everyone in the FOX E-Suites.