Your Cowboys are Giants

It is official: Your Dallas Cowboys are once more America's Team. And Jerry Jones has the TV ratings to prove it. If the Cowboys are on TV, millions are watching. No one else even comes close. And they haven't in a decade. Seriously, when you consider the fact there are about 200 more channels available than there were in 1996, when the Interweb was also in its dial-up infancy, these are some impressive stats. Or maybe the rest of the country also has a man-crush on Tony Romo.

Two weeks ago we told you the Cowboys-Colts game was the highest-rated pro football game of the season thus far, pulling in a 15.8 rating/29 share in households. That marked the second time this season the Cowboys attracted a whole bunch o' eyeballs, the first being the October 23 ESPN-televised Monay night game against the New York Giants. The Cowboys debuted Tony Romo in front of the largest audience in cable television history -- about 15 million viewers, or a 12.8 household rating.

Well, neither one of those impressive outings got squat on the Sunday afternoon telecast of the Cowboys-Giants game.

The Cowboys last-second win over the Giants, which put Dallas two games up in the NFC East, pulled in a 17.8/32 household rating and share -- which MediaWeek says is up 30 percent over the comparable game last season. But that ain't the half of it. Say MediaWeek and The Hollywood Reporter this morning, the game drew 27.6 million viewers, making it the highest-rated and most watched NFL regular season Sunday afternoon game on any network since the Denver Broncos played the San Francisco 49ers on December 15, 1997. And this is confusing, but The Hollywood Reporter also adds, "It was also the highest-rated Sunday afternoon game since a Dallas-San Francisco overtime contest on November 10, 1996." Guess it just wasn't the most watched. I dunno. Ask Ed Bark.

Says MediaWeek, "According to Nielsen Media Research data, the game opened with a 14.2 rating and 21.3 million viewers, and peaked at 7 p.m. with a rating of 19.7 and 31.2 million viewers. The game also averaged an adults 18-49 rating of 10.0, a men 18-49 rating of 14.1 a men 18-34 rating of 11.9 and a men 25-54 rating of 16.0." But what about the ladies? Don't have that data at the moment, but judging by the three women in my house, interest ranged from "we're gonna go ahead and eat" to "it is over yet?" with a smattering of "Tony Romo is kinda cute" every now and then. --Robert Wilonsky