FOXBOROUGH, Mass. – New England football fans were once again glued to their televisions to watch the Patriots this past Sunday, as the Patriots clinched their sixth straight AFC East title after defeating the Miami Dolphins, 41-13, in front of a sold-out crowd at Gillette Stadium. The division-clinching victory earned a 38.6 household rating, the second-highest ever for a Patriots game with a 1 p.m. kickoff, trailing only the Patriots' 20- 10 win vs. the Jets on Dec. 16, 2007, which earned a 40.4 rating. Additionally, the game registered a 72 market share, the second-highest in Patriots history. Market share refers to the percentage of active televisions tuned in to a particular show, meaning that on average, 72 percent of people watching television on Sunday afternoon in the Boston regional market were watching the Patriots game. New England's 38-35 win at the N.Y. Giants on Dec. 29, 2007 holds the current Patriots regular-season record for both household rating (50.1) and market share (75).
WBZ Channel 4's broadcast of the game was also the No. 1 ranked show in the Boston market for the week, averaging 1,407,500 total viewers. Despite competing with several other early afternoon games, Patriots-Dolphins easily bested the late afternoon Seahawks-49ers game (14.2 rating, 24.7 share) and Eagles-Cowboys game on NBC's "Sunday Night Football" (11.9 rating, 20.7 share), in terms of both average rating and share in the regional market. Once again, Patriots games have taken the top spot in the weekly regional television ratings every week this season.
The Patriots will finish this season's regular-season road slate when they travel to East Rutherford, N.J. to take on the New York Jets on Sunday, Dec. 21, at 1 p.m. New England previously defeated the Jets, 27-25, at Gillette Stadium in Week 7. Spero Dedes will call play-by-play with Solomon Wilcots providing color commentary for the CBS broadcast. The game can be seen locally on Boston's CBS affiliate, WBZ Channel 4.