More than 80 million watched the presidential debate on Monday night. For every 10 debate viewers, one watched Monday Night Football.
Via Richard Deitsch of SI.com, only 8.047 million watched the Falcons-Saints game. Based on numbers published Monday by SportsBusiness Daily, that’s the smallest total TV viewership in the 46-year history of the franchise.
Given the intense interest in the presidential campaign and shrinking prime-time viewership in eight of nine evening games played this year (relative to the same slots in 2015), it’s mildly surprising the total audience wasn’t even lower than that.
The NFL will try to rebound in Week Four, with the NFL Network-only broadcast of Dolphins-Bengals on Thursday night, Chiefs-Steelers on Sunday night, and Giants-Vikings on Monday night.