Super Bowl LV wrapped up an unusual NFL season on Sunday. Today, we’re learning more about how many people watched, how they watched, and what the future of football might look like.
Nielsen ratings show that this year’s Super Bowl was watched by 96.4 million viewers across all platforms. While 96.4 million is no small number, it does mean that Super Bowl LV was the least watched Super Bowl since 2007, according to data reported by CNBC, when the Colts took on the Bears for an audience of 93.1 million viewers.
The 2021 Super Bowl was still the most watched programming of the past year and the most live streamed game in history, with an average of 5.7 million viewers per minute. That number is up 69% from 2020.
The Tampa Bay Buccaneers won over the Kansas City Chiefs 31-9, with the number of viewers dropping steadily throughout the game as it became more and more clear that there was no coming back for the Chiefs.
Interestingly, the ratings also showed that there were more people watching the game in Boston, where the Super Bowl had a rating of 57.6, than in Tampa, where the rating was 52.3, as Patriots fans tuned in to watch their former quarterback pick up his seventh Super Bowl win.
“All things considered, the fact this game got played is nothing short of a miracle,” said Dan Cohen, senior vice president of the global media rights consulting division at Octagon, a firm that measured metrics during the game. “And the fact that you had Brady and Mahomes in the storylines going into it was the NFL’s greatest dream.”