Johnny Manziel’s NFL debut was a smash hit on television, and the NFL Network just announced the monster numbers: 1.81 rating and an average of 2.2 million viewers, resulting in the highest-rated and most-watched preseason game ever on the NFL Network.
For a Saturday night.
For a preseason game.
I didn’t plan my night around the game, but yes, I watched. I fast-forwarded when the Lions had the football. I watched Manziel (wrote about it here) and texted with friends who were also watching. Yup, I’m a fan.
The good news: People finally care about the long-suffering Browns.
The bad news: Every TV station and website just got reinforcement that the masses care deeply about Johnny Manziel, so expect more Manziel coverage (if that’s possible).
The five highest-rated preseason games in NFL Network history, according to the network:
1) Aug. 9, 2014: Cleveland vs. Detroit. 1.81 US HH / 2.82 M viewers
2) Aug. 5, 2007: New Orleans vs. Pittsburgh (HOF). 1.25 US HH / 2.07 M viewers
3) Aug. 15, 2010: Denver vs. Cincinnati. 1.23 US HH / 2.01 M viewers
4) Aug. 5, 2012: Arizona vs. New Orleans (HOF). 1.25 US HH / 1.97 M viewers
5) Aug. 18, 2012: New York Giants vs. New York Jets. 1.27 US HH / 1.90 M viewers
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