The Dallas Cowboys and the New England Patriots are two of the most popular sports teams in the world, so when they faced off on Sunday, every NFL fan was watching. But based on the latest television rating results, it seemed like the entire country was watching the two teams go at it. According to Sports Media Watch, the game averaged a 19.5 overnight rating on Fox which makes it the highest-rated regular-season overnight game since 2007 when the Patriots took on the Indianapolis Colts. The 19.5 rating also makes it the highest for an NFL telecast on Fox since 1996.
Overall, the game ranks as the highest-rated program since the Academy Awards in February which recorded 20.6. It's also the highest-rated sporting event since the Super Bowl when the Patriots defeated the Los Angeles Rams.
"Sunday's numbers were especially impressive given the NFL's lower ratings in the latter half of the 2010s. Prior to Sunday, no regular-season window in the past three seasons had exceeded a 17.0 overnight," Sports Media Watch's Paulsen wrote. "Earlier in the day, regional action featuring Seahawks-Eagles in 61% of markets averaged a 10.4 (+16%) — the highest for the window in Week 12 since 2011 (12.2)."
The Patriots won the game 13-9 and they improved their record to 10-1. Quarterback Tom Brady was happy with the win, but he was frustrated with the way the offense played on Sunday and the last couple of weeks.
"I have a job to do," Brady said Monday morning, per USA Today. "I think my job, it's very important to me. I want us to do as best we possibly can each week, like I always have. Everybody puts a lot into it and you want to see a great performance. When it's less than that, I don't know what I should feel other than what is authentic to me and what is authentic to my own personal feelings and beliefs about how we should be performing and what we need to do in order to do better."
As for the Cowboys, they fall to 6-5 but they are still in first place in the NFC East. Team owner Jerry Jones expressed his frustration with the team after the game.
"This is very frustrating," Jones said. "It's frustrating just to be reminded that some of the fundamentals of football and coaching were what beat us out there today. ... With the makeup of this team, I shouldn't be this frustrated."