Super Bowl 50 didn’t score a new ratings record yet still managed to rank as one of the most-watched TV telecasts of all time.
CBS Sports’ coverage of the Broncos vs. Panthers game was viewed by 111.9 million viewers, according to Nielsen. That makes Sunday’s game the third most-viewed program in history. Plus, the game streamed on more online platforms than ever before, racking up another 4 million unique viewers. The game was also the most-tweeted event of the year so far.
Still, in terms of on-air viewership, the relatively snoozy matchup snapped the recent-year streak of the Super Bowl setting new records with nearly every successive game. Last year’s New England Patriots vs. Seattle Seahawks thriller holds the U.S. television viewership record with 114.4 million viewers.
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After the big game, a special live telecast of The Late Show with Stephen Colbert had 21.1 million viewers — the largest audience ever for an edition of The Late Show. The program also received a 7.9 rating among adults 18-49. Still, this performance is actually on the low side for a post-Bowl show. Only CBS’ presentation of Elementary in 2013 scored lower (20.8 million) in the past 13 years.