TV Ratings: NFL Wild Card dominates Sunday, ‘Galavant’ and ‘Celebrity Apprentice’ start well

Fast National ratings for Sunday, January 4, 2015.

The last 55 minutes of a tight and controversial Wild Card game between the Cowboys and Lions spilled into Sunday primetime and proved huge enough to push FOX to a dominant performance in all measures, also giving big boosts to “The Simpsons,” “Brooklyn Nine-Nine,” “Family Guy” and “Bob's Burgers.”

Numbers for FOX are, of course, tentative and subject to change.

With new programming returning on Sunday after holiday breaks, there were a slew of notables, including a very strong return for NBC's “Celebrity Apprentice” and good NFL-free audiences for “Madam Secretary” and “The Good Wife.” ABC's fairy tale musical-comedy “Galavant” got off to an encouraging start on its own, though it was unable to serve as any kind of lead-in for “Resurrection” and “Revenge.”

On to the numbers…

Among adults 18-49, FOX averaged a 6.2 rating for Sunday night, tops in the key demographic. NBC was a distant second with a 1.8 key demo rating. ABC's 1.3 key demo rating and the 1.2 key demo rating for CBS followed for the night.

Overall, FOX averaged an estimated 16.87 million viewers and a 9.3 rating/14 share for Sunday night, far ahead of second place CBS' 9.445 million viewers and 6.0/9. There was a big drop to NBC's 6.51 million viewers and a 4.0/6 and to ABC's 3.1/5 and 5.36 million viewers.

7 p.m. – The conclusion of the NFC Wild Card game, plus five minutes of post-game, averaged a whopping 37.62 million viewers and 12.6 rating among adults 18-49 for FOX in the 7 p.m. hour. CBS was a rather distant second overall with 7.52 million viewers and third with a 0.8 key demo rating. ABC's “America's Funniest Home Videos” held up well with 6.08 million viewers for third and a 1.3 key demo rating in second. The first of two “Dateline” hours averaged 4.22 million viewers and a 0.7 key demo rating for NBC. 

8 p.m. – “Madam Secretary” moved CBS into first overall for the 8 p.m. hour with 11.55 million viewers, but finished fourth with a 1.4 rating among adults 18-49. FOX was second overall and won the hour in the key demo with football-boosted episodes of “The Simpsons” (10.51 million and a 4.6 key demo) and “Brooklyn Nine-Nine” (6.015 million and a 2.9 key demo). NBC's “Dateline” was third with 8.26 million viewers and a 1.9 key demo rating. ABC  was fourth overall and second in the key demo with episodes of “Galavant” drawing 7.875 million viewers and a 2.1 key demo rating and then 6.8 million viewers and a 1.9 key demo rating.

9 p.m. – “The Good Wife” won the 9 p.m. hour overall for CBS with 10.24 million viewers and finished third with a 1.3 rating among adults 18-49. NBC's “Celebrity Apprentice” premiere averaged 6.69 million viewers for and a 2.3 key demo rating, both good for second. FOX was third overall and first in the key demo with “Family Guy” (5.5 million and a 2.8 key demo) and “Bob's Burgers” (3.95 million and a 1.9 key demo). ABC's “Resurrection” averaged 4.095 million (including 3.81 million in its second half-hour) and a 1.0 key demo rating in fourth.

10 p.m. – CBS closed primetime in first overall with 8.48 million viewers and finished second with a 1.2 rating among adults 18-49 for “CSI: Crime Scene Investigation.” NBC's “Celebrity Apprentice” was second with 6.89 million viewers and won the hour comfortably with a 2.4 key demo rating. ABC's “Revenge” averaged only 3.94 million viewers and a 0.9 key demo rating.

All ratings information comes from preliminary Fast National Nielsen data, which includes live and same-day DVR viewing. All numbers are subject to change, particularly in the case of live events.