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December 29, 2011 by · Leave a Comment 

ESPN’s Monday Night Football may have continued to rank as the No. 1 series on cable television in 2011, but ratings were down significantly from last year, particularly when the final games of the season were compared, according to Nielsen data compiled by Multichannel News. In its sixth season on ESPN, the 17 NFL games averaged 13.3 million viewers, down from 14.7 million viewers in 2010 and 14.4 million in 2009. While the final game of the season — New Orleans vs. Atlanta — surpassed that average with 15.6 million viewers, the same two teams averaged 19.1 million viewers on the same night a year ago — a drop of more than 18 percent. Nevertheless, the ESPN telecasts proved to be a mighty force in television — on four occasions during the season they represented the most-watched programs on Monday-night primetime television, broadcast or cable.