Virtual NFL Draft Breaks Previous Viewing Record

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With the COVID-19 pandemic shutting down all aspects of the current and upcoming sports seasons, the NFL draft has been the only thing that sports fans have been looking forward to. Last night, the NFL draft hit its own record numbers as viewership from deprived sports fans went through the roof. The outbreak has put the NBA, MLB, and NHL on hold leaving sports fans with little to nothing to fill the sports void left in their televisions. Despite its usual airing on sports networks like ESPN, NFL Network, and ESPN Deportes, the draft has also found it way to have its own slot on ABC. Up 37% from the previous year, the program averaged about 15.6 million viewers. This high rating breaking the draft viewing record previously belonging to the 2014 draft with 12.4 million viewers. These viewers tuned into a program filled with “…players, coaches, general managers, analysts and NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell broadcast[ing] from their homes…including more than 100 camera feeds (Pallotta, 2020).”

With much of the population having to stay at home during this pandemic, TV viewership is bound to reach some unexpected highs. ESPN also aired “The Last Dance”, a docuseries about Michael Jordan and the Chicago Bulls, reaching 6.1 million viewers. Not only was this years draft the most viewed ever, but so was “The Last Dance” as ESPN most viewed documentary ever.

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