Super Bowl Viewership Drops to 96.4 Million

Super Bowl LV logo CBS Sports

Viewership of CBS Sports coverage of Super Bowl LV dropped to 96.4 million from 102 million last year, despite a big rise in streaming viewers.

The numbers were released Tuesday, after a delay from Nielsen's usual next-day delivery

The game, with Tom Brady and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers beating the Kansas City Chiefs, was a blowout and featured two small market teams, possibly accounting for the lowest ratings since 2007.

Advertisers paid $5.5 million for commercials to reach what is TV's largest audience annually.

The total audience number reported by CBS includes 5.7 million streaming viewers per minute, up 65% from last year’s Super Bowl. 

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The record-setting streaming total includes viewing on, the CBS Sports App, NFL digital properties, team mobile properties, Verizon Media mobile properties and ESPN Deportes TV and digital properties. 

Among local markets, Kansas City generated the most enthusiasm, with a 59.9 household rating, the highest ever for that market and up 8% from last year, when the Chiefs won Super Bowl XLIX. Boston had the second highest rating -- 57.6 -- as fans tuned in to watch Brady, the former New England quarterback, win a seventh ring. Tampa-St. Petersburg was third with a 52.3 rating.

ViacomCBS said Super Bowl Sunday was a record-breaking day for new subscriber sign-ups, streams and time spent viewing on CBS All Access, which will be rebranded as Paramount Plus next month. There were several ads for Paramount Plus during the game.

Jon Lafayette

Jon has been business editor of Broadcasting+Cable since 2010. He focuses on revenue-generating activities, including advertising and distribution, as well as executive intrigue and merger and acquisition activity. Just about any story is fair game, if a dollar sign can make its way into the article. Before B+C, Jon covered the industry for TVWeek, Cable World, Electronic Media, Advertising Age and The New York Post. A native New Yorker, Jon is hiding in plain sight in the suburbs of Chicago.