Exclusive: Minneapolis Challenges Charlotte, Denver in Nielsen’s Super Bowl 50 Local Market Analysis

Related: Super Bowl Averages 111.9 Million Viewers

In an analysis of 70 local markets, Nielsen found that, not surprisingly, the Charlotte and Denver markets dominated drew top ratings for Super Bowl 50, though Minneapolis-St. Paul, Buffalo and Nashville also fared well.

Nielsen looked at household and demographic data for the 70 markets for the game on Feb. 7, as well as data from its local people meter (LPM) markets for the country’s top 25 metros and Set Meter or Code Reader numbers from the other 45 DMAs.

Among the LPM markets, Charlotte (DMA No. 22), home of the Panthers, scored the highest preliminary household rating at 55.7, while Denver (DMA No. 17), home of the Super Bowl champion Broncos, took third with a 54.1 rating. Charlotte also topped the rankings for female viewers 18-49 (53.4) and 25-54 (57.1). Denver bested the other LPM markets in seven of the 14 demo lists, including adults 18-49 (52.3).

Minneapolis-St. Paul (DMA No. 15), which is hosting the Super Bowl two years from now, snagged the No. 2 spot at 54.7 in addition to being the top LPM market for adults 25-54 with a 56.9 rating.

Related: Super Bowl Draws 49 Rating, 73 share

Of the 31 Set Meter markets, Buffalo (DMA No. 53) took first in nine of 14 demos, including adults 18-49 (57.8) and 25-54 (60.5). Nashville’s (DMA No. 29) household rating of 57.9 was the highest among Set Meter markets.

Also noteworthy was the showing of the Greensboro-High Point-Winston Salem, N.C. market (DMA No. 46), not far from Charlotte, and Knoxville, Tenn. (DMA No. 62), where Broncos quarterback Peyton Manning went to school at Tennessee. Both markets posted solid 56.4 household ratings. Additionally, Charlotte delivered a whopping 64.8 rating for men 18-49, while Knoxville nabbed a 62.4 rating for men 55 and over.

For Code Reader markets, Charleston, S.C. (DMA No. 94) — no doubt fueled by its proximity to Charlotte — had the highest ratings in five key demo groups, including a 49.5 among adults 18-49. With a 54.6 rating, Harrisburg-Lancaster-Lebanon-York, Pa. (DMA No. 44) ranked best for adults 25-54.