Seahawks’ playoff exit most-watched TV event in Seattle since Super Bowl XL

Sunday’s NFC Divisional Playoff Game between the Seahawks and Atlanta Falcons attracted about 87 percent of the television sets turned on in the Seattle-Tacoma area, the Seattle Times noted this morning.

The Seahawks rallied to overcome a 20-0 halftime deficit and a 27-7 fourth quarter score to take the lead, 28-27, with 31 seconds to play in the game. But Falcons quarterback Matt Ryan quickly drove his club into field goal range and kicker Matt Bryant booted a 49-yard field goal that proved to be the game-winner.

The Seahawks’ 30-28 loss earned a 79 Nielsen share (percentage of televisions turned on) for the entire game and a rating of 45.6 percent of the total TV market in Seattle, according to Jeremy Dietz, research director at KCPQ (FOX, channel 13 in Seattle). Dietz said the number equates to 829,000 households and 1.494 million viewers watching the game in the Seattle-Tacoma region, and those numbers do not account for people who watched the game outside their own home at local bars or house parties.

“It was beyond our expectations,” Dietz said of the numbers to the Seattle Times. “The last couple of weeks of the season the numbers started spiking. These playoff games were way higher than anything we’ve seen in a long time.”

Sunday’s ratings were higher than any television event in Seattle since 2006, when the Seahawks fell to the Pittsburgh Steelers, 21-10, in Super Bowl XL at Ford Field in Detroit, Michigan. According to Dietz, Super Bowl XL drew 926,000 households, a 54.4 rating and 85 share in the area.


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