Divisional playoff TV ratings keep rising

The Sports Xchange
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Mostly competitive games, including a thriller and an upset, fueled strong television ratings for the NFL Divisional Playoffs this past weekend.

Sunday???s New York Giants-Green Bay Packers game on FOX pulled in an average of 45.1 million viewers, to become the most-watched Divisional Playoff game in the history of the contest.

The day's other game, the AFC battle between the Texans and Ravens didn't fare as well, perhaps lacking the traditional rivalry of Packers-Giants, but still snared 31 million viewers for CBS.

Saturday's 49ers-Saints thriller came down to the final seconds after more twists and turns than a good mystery novel. The FOX game enjoyed the second-highest ratings of the weekend, with 35.6 million viewers.

The game edged out the weekend's lone blowout, as the Tim Tebow-led Broncos were crushed by Tom Brady and the relentless Patriots on CBS. That contest grabbed 34.2 million viewers.

All four contests averaged over 30 million viewers, marking the second straight year with those numbers. The games were also the top four viewed programs of the week, outpointing the BCS title tilt between Alabama and LSU (24.2 million), which came in at No. 5.

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