It was the night of Sunday, Sept. 25. To NFL fans it was a day already filled with football that was scheduled to end with Steelers at Colts, and to TV fans it was the opening Sunday of the primetime television season.
By the time Sunday melted into Monday, the Steelers had defeated the Colts and Sunday Night Football had posted ratings good enough to be the No. 1-rated broadcast of the evening. The 13.2 rating earned by Steelers-Colts represented an increase of 2 percent over last year's Week 3 game (Jets-Dolphins), despite facing competition from 11 network season premieres.
The ratings for Steelers-Colts marked the best overnight rating in the six years of Sunday Night Football while facing the opening Sunday of the primetime television season.
Among the network premieres that night were ABC's Extreme Makeover: Home Edition, Desperate Housewives and Pan Am; CBS's 60 Minutes, Amazing Race, The Good Wife and CSI Miami; and Fox's The Simpsons, The Cleveland Show, Family Guy and American Dad.
In the Pittsburgh television market, the game crushed all competition with a 48.5 rating and a 67 share. The share indicates that 67 percent of the televisions in use in the Pittsburgh market were tuned to the Steelers game.
Pittsburgh also checked in as the top metered market for the game. The rest of the top 10 included Indianapolis (40.7/56); Richmond (20.0/29); Norfolk (19.7/27); New Orleans (18.8/25); Nashville (18.7/26); Las Vegas (18.5/29); Memphis (17.8/25); Washington, D.C. (17.4/29); Baltimore (17.2/26).