Super Bowl takes aim at ratings record

Read More at: Variety

In a season in which the NFL has set new ratings records, the Super Bowl could break the biggest record of all.

With the Pittsburgh Steelers and Green Bay Packers clinching their berths Sunday, there’s feverish anticipation that the game could topple the record set by the 106.5 million who turned out for last year’s championship between Indianapolis and New Orleans. That game on CBS topped the 1983 finale of “MASH,” also on CBS, as TV’s most-watched program of all time.

The Steelers are among the league’s most popular teams, and few franchises have the tradition of the Packers — even if Brett Favre is no longer leading them. If the ratings for Sunday’s conference championship games are any indication, this Super Bowl should go through the roof. The Steelers’ 24-19 victory over the New York Jets drew a record 54.8 million for CBS, the most ever for an AFC championship. The Packers’ 21-14 win over the Chicago Bears scored 51.9 million viewers for Fox, marking the largest audience ever for the first game on a conference championship Sunday.

The NFL and Fox don’t like to play ratings prognosticator, but clearly the league is excited about this year’s history-rich Super Bowl matchup.