Ratings: ‘Sunday Night Football’ Plunges 39%; CBS Takes Night With NFL, ‘Survivor’

Football overrun and reality competition give CBS first win against NBC’s NFL coverage this season

NBC's "Sunday Night Football" dropped dramatically from last week, while CBS took the night's top ratings and the highest viewership Sunday night, according to preliminary numbers.

While the live-sports factor renders NBC's numbers approximate, early data indicates that the Baltimore Ravens-San Diego Chargers "Sunday Night Football" faceoff at 8:30 p.m. dropped 39 percent compared to last week's game, receiving a 5.2 rating/13 share in the adults 18-49 market, with 13.8 million total viewers. The game was preceded by three consecutive episodes of "Football Night in America" from 7 to 8:30, which drew a 1.8/5 in the demo and 6 million total viewers, a 3.1/9 and 8.8 million, and a 3.7/10 and 13.8 million.

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Football fared better on CBS. While the numbers are approximate, NFL overrun on the network from 7 to 7:30 was the highest-rated programming of the night with an 8.0/23 in the demo, and also the most-watched programming of the night with 26.8 million total viewers. (Different games aired in different regions.) The overrun gave a considerable boost to "60 Minutes" at 7:33 p.m., which enjoyed a 47 percent surge for a 4.4/12 in the demo and 18.7 million total viewers. The "Survivor" season finale at 8:30 drew a 4.0/10 in the demo and 13 million total viewers, while the "Survivor" reunion episode closed the night at 10:30, receiving a 3.2/8 in the demo and 10.2 million total viewers. Overall, the network took a ratings win with an average 4.5/11 in the demo — its first Sunday night win in the demo against NBC's football coverage this season — and snagged the highest total viewership, averaging 15.8 million total viewers.

Following repeats of "America's Funniest Home Videos" and "Once Upon a Time," ABC aired "The Santa Clause 3: The Escape Clause," which was down 32 percent from the equivalent telecast last year with a 1.3/3 in the demo and 4 million total viewers.

With the exception of "Allen Gregory" at 8:30, which received a 1.5/4 in the demo and 3.3 million total viewers, Fox aired repeats Sunday night.