FOXBOROUGH, Mass.- On Sunday afternoon, the New England Patriots kicked off their 2018 campaign with a 27-20 win over the Houston Texans. The excitement of a new season and the thrill of victory brought in a record-breaking local audience, as the CBS broadcast finished as the Patriots' most-watched 1:00 p.m. season opener in the Nielsen LPM era (since 2002).
The highly anticipated matchup delivered a 34.8 household rating, 69 market share and averaged 1,416,900 local viewers, which ranks second in viewership among 17 season-opening games since 2002, even beating out seven prime time games in that time.
The game, which peaked at 4:00 p.m. with a 38.5 household rating and 1,536,200 viewers, was also the most-watched program in the Boston market this week across all programming. In comparison to last year's season opener, an 8:30 p.m. Thursday night matchup against the Chiefs on NBC, ratings were up one percent.
Additionally, WBZ's Patriots Gameday and Patriots 5th Quarter finished as the top-rated programs in their respective time periods. Patriots 5th Quarter delivered a rating of 10.0 and averaged 354,700 viewers.
The Patriots will travel to Jacksonville next week to take on the Jaguars in a 2017 AFC Championship rematch on Sunday at 4:25 p.m. ET at FIAA Bank Field. The game will again be broadcast on WBZ and called by the CBS "A" crew with Jim Nantz handling play-by-play duties, Tony Romo leading color commentary and Tracy Wolfson providing analysis from the sideline.