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January 20, 2014 by · Leave a Comment 

NBC didn’t have Sunday Night Football on its schedule and slipped back into last place in the ratings as it tried to counterprogram Fox TV, which did have Sunday-night football — in the guise of the NFC Championship game between the San Francisco 49ers and the Seattle Seahawks. Ratings for the game shot through the roof as it averaged 44.68 million viewers, peaking in the first half-hour with 47.02 million, according to overnight Nielsen figures. NBC, apparently, attempted to capture female viewers who were not interested in football by airing the 2011 comedy Bridesmaids, but it averaged just 3.20 million viewers. Among the key 18-49 age group, it drew an 0.7 rating and a 2 share. Nothing on the schedule of any competitor attracted a smaller audience on Sunday.

UPDATE: Nielsen now estimates that 55.9 million watched the NFC Championship game on Fox, while earlier in the day 55.3 million watched the AFC Championship between the Denver Broncos and the New England Patriots on CBS. The figures represented the biggest audience for the conference championship games since 1982.