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Study finds 208 million Americans watched at least part of Super Bowl LVI

Mike Florio and Mike Golic play another round of Fill in the Blank, predicting where some of the biggest quarterbacks will end up at the beginning of the 2022 NFL season.

A new study suggests that the actual number of Americans who watched at least part of Super Bowl LVI was significantly higher than previously believed.

The actual number of viewers who watched at least some of the Super Bowl was 208 million, according to the NFL and Nielsen, relying on both the standard Nielsen data that has been used to measure TV viewership for decades, and a new survey by the University of Chicago’s National Opinion Research Center to determine viewing of the Super Bowl outside people’s homes, such as at parties, bars and restaurants.

That 208 million figure is 25 percent higher than the 167 million that Nielsen previously said watched at least some of the Super Bowl, but Nielsen is now accepting that the 167 million figure was an undercount, owing to the unique nature of the Super Bowl as an event that people often watch in large groups.

“While it’s no secret that the Super Bowl is the biggest event across the media landscape on a yearly basis, the exact number of people watching the game has been challenging to pinpoint given the fact that people tend to gather in groups to watch the game,” said Paul Ballew, chief data and analytics officer of the NFL, in a statement, via the Wall Street Journal.

The most commonly cited viewership number for Super Bowl LVI is 112.3 million people, which is Nielsen’s estimate of how many people were watching the game at any given time during the broadcast.