Providence edges Boston with higher TV rating for Pats win

(AP Photo/Darron Cummings)

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) – The Patriots are New England’s team, but preliminary television ratings give the Providence region initial bragging rights when it comes to who’s most devoted to Tom Brady’s squad.

Super Bowl LI, which aired locally on Fox Providence, scored a 54.6 household rating in the Providence TV market, slightly higher than its 54.3 rating in the Boston market, according to early Nielsen Media Research numbers released Monday morning by Fox Sports.

The Providence TV market includes all of Rhode Island as well as portions of Southeastern Massachusetts.

Boston did, however, post a slightly higher share (81) than Providence (78) for the game. Michael Mulvihill, a spokesman for the network, also noted on Twitter:

Six metropolitan areas posted even higher household TV ratings for the big game than New England’s two leading cities: Pittsburgh, Buffalo, Atlanta, Norfolk, Richmond and Milwaukee. Hartford tied for 11th with a 54.0 rating.

The Super Bowl is consistently the most-watched TV event of the year, with more than 100 million viewers tuning in annually during this decade.

According to numbers released later Monday by Fox, Super Bowl LI’s American viewership totaled 172 million and averaged 111.3 million throughout the broadcast.

Ted Nesi (tnesi@wpri.com) covers politics and the economy for WPRI.com. He writes Nesi’s Notes on Saturdays and hosts Executive Suite. Follow him on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram