Week 1 schedule sets up for a ratings bonanza
We’re sufficiently famished for NFL football that the league could have parked a pack of stinkers for the first weekend of the season, and we would have been happy. To the league’s credit, the schedule is loaded up with great games.
Tonight, the Rams hang a banner against the Bills. Of all the games on the L.A. home schedule, this one is the best.
Then comes Sunday night, when Tom Brady makes one his second ever visit to AT&T Stadium, to face a Cowboys team that, good or not, always draws in the eyeballs.
The week ends with former Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson going back to Seattle, with the Broncos.
In between, there are nine games starting at 1:00 p.m. ET on Sunday (including Steelers at Bengals and Patriots at Dolphins) and four games at 4:25 p.m. split between CBS and Fox, a new Week One tradition that has both networks getting major late-afternoon games: Packers-Vikings, Chiefs-Cardinals, Giants-Titans, Raiders-Chargers.
The ratings should be massive. As Peter King pointed out on PFT Live after the schedule was released in May, that likely will generate year-to-year comparisons that will reveal a major increase in audience from 2021 to 2022. Which will, in theory, help build the kind of momentum that will carry into Week Two and beyond.
So while the league benefits from the ratings bonanza to come, we benefit from getting to watch several great matchups right out of the gates.