FOXBOROUGH, Mass. – In a rematch of Super Bowl LII on Thursday night, Tom Brady made his 2018 debut and led the Patriots to a 37-20 victory over the Philadelphia Eagles in the second preseason game of the year at Gillette Stadium. The performance resonated with local audiences, as the WBZ broadcast was the most-watched event of the summer with more viewers than the highest-rated Red Sox-Yankees game, the World Cup Final, Game 4 of the NBA Finals and the MLB All-Star Game.
In a combined total of WBZ-CBS and WMUR-ABC stations in the Boston (Manchester) DMA, the game delivered a 17.8 household rating, 33 market share and averaged 599,400 viewers. By comparison, ratings were 48 percent higher than last year's Week 2 numbers, a Saturday night matchup with the Houston Texans. Ratings peaked at 8:45 p.m. on Thursday night with a 21.9 household rating, 38 market share and 761,400 viewers in the combined DMA.
Thursday's WBZ broadcast, featuring Bob Socci and Scott Zolak on the call, generated a local household rating of 14.6 in the Boston market, which is the highest rating for a Patriots Week 2 preseason game since 2013. It also finished as the week's top-rated program in the Boston market with 483,500 viewers.
Additionally, WBZ's Patriots GameDay and 5th Quarter were the top-rated programs in their time periods and beat all prime time programming across Boston stations.
The Patriots will continue preseason action next week as they travel to Charlotte to face the Carolina Panthers on Friday night for a 7:30 p.m. ET kickoff at Bank of America Stadium. The game will be broadcast locally on WBZ with Socci handling play-by-play duties, Zolak leading color commentary and Rob Ninkovich providing analysis from the sideline.