Food, family, and football.
That’s the NFL’s motto for Thanksgiving, and it lived up to the hype for the 2023 edition of the holiday.
The Dallas Cowboys’ dominating 45-10 victory over the Washington Commanders on Thanksgiving Day certainly grabbed the attention of American football fans, drawing 41.4 million viewers on CBS. That makes Thursday’s matchup the third-most-watched regular-season game in NFL history. It’s the most-watched telecast of any kind since Super Bowl LVII in February.
The figure falls behind the 42 million viewers that tuned in last Thanksgiving for the Cowboys’ 28-20 win over the New York Giants and a Giants-San Francisco 49ers matchup that drew 41.6 million viewers in 1990.
On Thursday night, the 49ers’ 31-13 victory over the Seattle Seahawks drew 26.9 million viewers across NBC, Peacock, Telemundo, Universo, NBC Sports Digital, and NFL Digital platforms. It was the second-most watched Thanksgiving primetime game ever, just behind the 27.8 million viewers for a Chicago Bears-Green Bay Packers game in 2015.
The Cowboys’ 35-point win over the Commanders was the most-streamed NFL game ever for Paramount+, and 49ers-Seahawks was the most-streamed NFL Thanksgiving night game ever, on Peacock. Fox viewership for the Packers’ 29-22 upset of the Detroit Lions on Thanksgiving has not been released.
The NFL Goes Shopping
The NFL action continued with the first-ever Black Friday game on Amazon Prime Video, in which the Miami Dolphins took down the New York Jets 34-13. Viewership has not been released, but “Thursday Night Football” on Prime Video has averaged 12.27 million viewers.
Amazon paid the NFL $100 million for the rights to the Black Friday game, which was a look into the future of shopping during sports broadcasts. QR codes were rampant on-screen during the game broadcast, and ad breaks as Amazon and other brands looked to capitalize on the biggest shopping day of the year.