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The Evidence is Clear (Again): Americans Love Football

In June the final ratings were tallied for the ’19/’20 television season. Unsurprisingly, football once again dominated. Sunday Night Football on NBC was the highest-rated show on TV, clocking in at a 20.1 average rating. For comparison, NCIS on CBS was next at 15.3. Almost five ratings points separated Sunday Night Football from the next most-watched show in America. The NFL’s dominance didn’t stop flexing there. Thursday Night Football came in third on FOX at 15.0, and Monday Night Football on ESPN was fourth at 12.8. Three of the top four shows in the U.S. are the NFL in primetime. Even college football netted a spot in the top 75, as ABC’s jewel game of the week on Saturday nights came in 71st at a 4.9.

The only other sports content that rated in the top 100 was ESPN’s documentary on Michael Jordan, “The Last Dance,” which came in 35th. The newest evidence was in, and it told us the country is still mad about football. Hundreds of thousands of men, women, and children gather to watch their favorite teams play every week. It’s a huge part of so many people’s lives, but for those who don’t understand just what makes the game so great, this can seem a little confusing. Why does the nation spend so much time obsessing over a sport like this?

Action 

Football isn’t the most popular game in the US for no reason; it is so well-loved because there is non-stop action from the first whistle to the end of the game. Baseball has fallen off dramatically because of the dead periods in play. Other sports like basketball have caught up because of the pace of the game. There is never a quiet moment in football. Someone is always moving, the speed is quick, and some action is always happening. 

When you watch a football game, you know you’ll have non-stop action from beginning to end, and this rush of adrenaline (from big plays, hits, and dramatic moments) is one of the reasons why people love to watch this game. Even if they never step foot on a football field themselves, they can still feel like they take part in the action.

Something to Look Forward To

Football isn’t played every day, so it’s much easier to stay up to date with how your team is doing. It’s hard to follow a 162-game baseball season. The NBA knows it needs to cut down on games. Fewer events means everything feels more important in the NFL. Plus it doesn’t take up too much of your time. You can set aside a few hours once a week quite easily, whereas if football was a daily occurrence you might not be able to be quite so involved. As a hobby, football is easy to enjoy, especially when there are so many different ways you can watch the game, from being there live (in normal years) to never missing a touchdown because you can watch live football on Unibet, which is an amazing use of new tech. 

Being only played once a week also means that football is something to look forward to. This has been shown to be good for your mental health, and it can make you feel hopeful for the future even if you’re feeling down in general. Clearly, the love of football is important. 

Keep Fit 

Some people who truly love to watch football play it too, in flag football leagues, weekend rec teams, and just in the backyard. Enrollment for flag football continues to rise. It’s a good way to keep fit and active 

You might not be a professional – you might not even be particularly good at football, or any sports – but if you enjoy your time playing and you play with others who have the same skill level as you, it doesn’t matter. You could be amazing, or you could be terrible, but either way you’re still burning calories and getting your body moving.

If your love of football has encouraged you to be more active, you’re not alone, and this is yet another reason people feel connected to the game of football.

The Fizz is owned, edited and operated by Damon Amendolara. D.A. is an ’01 Syracuse graduate from the Newhouse School with a degree in Broadcast Journalism.

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