Weekly Cable Ratings: Fox News Wins Close Primetime Race

ESPN Draft logo
ESPN's coverage of the 2021 NFL Draft drew more than 6 million viewers (Image credit: ESPN)

Fox News Channel held off a challenge from ESPN to finish first on last week’s primetime cable ratings charts, according to Nielsen.

Fox News averaged 2.2 million viewers for the week of April 26 to May 2, reported Nielsen. ESPN, fueled by the 6.4 million viewers who tuned into its April 29 NFL Draft first round coverage -- averaged 2 million viewers for the week to finish second.

Also Read: Report: NFL Draft Scores 1.25 Million Viewers 

MSNBC was third with 1.6 million viewers, followed by HGTV with 1.2 million watchers and CNN with 1.1 million viewers. TBS (849,000), Hallmark Channel (839,000), History (832,000), TNT (768,000) and INSP (749,000) finished among the top 10 most-watched networks for the week. 

Fox News again topped the total day chart with 1.2 million viewers, the 11th straight week the network has topped both ratings charts. MSNBC (887,000 viewers), CNN (694,000), ESPN (688,000) and HGTV (658,000) rounded out the top five list, according to Nielsen.   

Also Read: Cable News Networks Dominate April Monthly Total Day Chart 

R. Thomas Umstead

R. Thomas Umstead serves as senior content producer, programming for Multichannel News, Broadcasting + Cable and Next TV. During his more than 30-year career as a print and online journalist, Umstead has written articles on a variety of subjects ranging from TV technology, marketing and sports production to content distribution and development. He has provided expert commentary on television issues and trends for such TV, print, radio and streaming outlets as Fox News, CNBC, the Today show, USA Today, The New York Times and National Public Radio. Umstead has also filmed, produced and edited more than 100 original video interviews, profiles and news reports featuring key cable television executives as well as entertainers and celebrity personalities.