Super Bowl Soars in Ratings

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The Super Bowl scored its highest-ever overnight ratings for New England’s thrilling win over Seattle, an early indication the game may be on the way to another viewership record.

The Nielsen company said Monday the game had a 49.7 rating in the nation’s largest media markets, up 4 percent over last year’s game. That means 49.7 percent of the nation’s 116 million homes with television were watching the game.

Nielsen had no immediate estimate of the number of viewers. Last year’s contest between Seattle and Denver was seen by 111.5 million, the annual game setting a record for the most-watched TV event in U.S. history for the fourth time in five years.

The game had a 72 share, meaning 72 percent of televisions on Sunday night were tuned to NBC’s broadcast of the game in which the Patriots scored a 28-24 victory over the Seahawks.