TVrat­ings high­est since 1986 forAFC ti­tle game

The Denver Post - - SPORTS - By Nicki Jhab­vala Nicki Jhab­vala: njhab­vala@ den­ver­post. com or @ Nick­iJhab­vala

The Bron­cos’ 20- 18 vic­tory Sun­day over the New Eng­land Pa­tri­ots on CBS was the high­est- rated AFC cham­pi­onship game in 30 years and the se­cond most­watched AFC ti­tle game on record.

The game, the first of the two con­fer­ence ti­tle games aired Sun­day, pulled in a rat­ing/ share of 29.3/ 51 ( 29.3 per­cent of house­holds tuned in and 51 per­cent of house­holds with­TVs in use watched the game). The NFC cham­pi­onship game be­tween the Carolina Pan­thers and Ari­zona Car­di­nals on Fox drew 24.1/ 37. The pre­vi­ous high was achieved by the New Eng­land Pa­tri­ots- Mi­ami Dol­phins con­fer­ence ti­tle game on NBC on Jan. 12, 1986, which earned 32.4/ 56.

It was the se­cond most­watched AFC cham­pi­onship game in ei­ther time slot and on any net­work, draw­ing 53.3 mil­lion view­ers and trail­ing only the New York Jets- Pitts­burgh Steel­ers game Jan. 23, 2011 that was aired by CBS ( 54.9 mil­lion). Sun­day’s NFC cham­pi­onship gameon Fox, by com­par­i­son, drew 45.7 mil­lion view­ers.

View­er­ship for the Bron­cos’ AFC ti­tle vic­tory peaked with an av­er­age of 62.9 mil­lion view­ers from 4 to 4: 30 p. m., when the Pa­tri­ots scored late in the game to close Den­ver’s lead to the fi­nal two- point mar­gin.

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