If you lost interest in Sunday's sluggish, uneventful Super Bowl, you weren't the only one. According to Sports Business Journal's Austin Karp, Super Bowl LIII was the lowest rated Super Bowl in 10 years, after it drew an overnight rating of 44.9. This made the game the least watched Super Bowl since 2009, when the Steelers beat the Cardinals.
There are a number of factors that can be blamed for the dramatic dip in viewership. For starters, it was the lowest scoring game in Super Bowl history. The very real idea of Patriots fatigue could have been at play as well. This was the team's third straight Super Bowl appearance, and frankly, fans are likely tired of watching Tom Brady hoist the Vince Lombardi Trophy.
The anemic ratings also align with a steady loss in viewership that has plagued the NFL's biggest showcase in recent years. Last year's Super Bowl, which featured a historic victory by the Philadelphia Eagles, also saw a ratings dip from the previous year.
Another possible reason for the ratings slide could be the various controversies surrounding the NFL, including its treatment of players like Colin Kaepernick and Eric Reid, as well as its botched handling of multiple cases of domestic abuse involving its players. For instance, both Rihanna and Ava DuVernay boycotted the Super Bowl in support of Kaepernick. And they weren't the only ones who tuned out in protest.
According to Times-Picayune columnist Jeff Duncan, TV ratings in New Orleans hit a historic low, with much of the city boycotting the game after the Saints were ousted by the now-infamous blown call in the NFC Championship game.
Despite the apparent doom and gloom surrounding America's most marquee sporting event, it's worth pointing out that Sunday's Super Bowl will still be the most watched television event of 2019, and it won't be close.