Thursday Night Football scored its biggest audience since moving to streaming with its opening game of the 2023 season.
The Philadelphia Eagles’ 34-28 win over the Minnesota Vikings averaged 15.05 million viewers on Amazon’s Prime Video and local broadcast outlets in the teams’ home markets, according to Nielsen. That’s the largest audience, by about 2 million viewers, since the weeknight NFL showcase moved to Prime Video last year and up 15.5 percent from the previous high mark: 13.03 million for the opener last year.
And, per a customized report that integrates first-party streaming data with Nielsen’s national panel figures, the game averaged 16.6 million viewers across all platforms (including Twitch and NFL digital properties) and inclusive of computer and mobile devices.
TNF averaged about 9.6 million viewers last season in Nielsen’s ratings, somewhat below prior years when telecasts aired on Fox and the NFL Network (with the latter having a handful of exclusive contests). Amazon’s own figures for the games, which combine proprietary data with the Nielsen numbers, were somewhat higher, but the ad business for the games is determined by the Nielsen figures.
Nielsen had planned to incorporate some first-party data into Thursday Night Football‘s national ratings this season, but delayed implementing the combined numbers after criticism from other NFL broadcasters and an industry trade group, as well as the fact that the plan had yet to receive approval from the Media Rating Council, a regulatory body that accredits media measurement companies.
The higher number for Thursday’s game is Nielsen calls a custom integrated live streaming report. It combines Nielsen’s panel-based measurement with data from Amazon’s first party viewing signal, which is aggregated from connected TV devices.