This is the first time ever that NBC has carried both the Super Bowl and the Winter Olympics during the same broadcast season. And, with a boost from Super Bowl LII and the first few days of PyeongChang coverage (through Feb. 11), NBC has overtaken longtime broadcast leader in total viewers, CBS, with an average of 9.57 million vs. 9.39 million. NBC currently also is No. 1 in adults 18-49 for the 2017-18 broadcast season.
This marks the first time NBC has ranked No. 1 in total viewers at any point during the season since it won the 2001-02 season — the first time that the network carried Winter Olympics with the highly rated Salt Lake City games, held on American soil.
Excluding all sports, CBS remains the total viewership leader, though NBC has logged its closest No. 2 position (1.9 million viewers behind CBS) at this point in the season in 15 years, since 2002-03.
In addition to the Super Bowl and the Olympics, which gave NBC the boost it needed to take over the top spot in viewers, the network was helped by drama This Is Us, which is running up 23% versus last season in total viewers (16.9 million viewers vs. 13.8 million, “most current”) and is on track to rank as the No. 1 drama in total viewers when additional time-shifting is tallied; the No. 1 alternative series, The Voice; Ellen’s Game of Games, the biggest new reality in-season launch since Little Big Shots; as well as the 75th Golden Globe Awards.