|The NFL denied Harrison's appeal of his one-game suspension(Getty Images)|
Saturday night's Broncos-Patriots game didn't end in a climatic way: New England steamrolled Denver 45-10, and the drama was out of the game by halftime. But that didn't stop people from tuning in, as the CBS Saturday night affair brought in big-time ratings.
The average overnight rating/share for the game was 20.6/34, making it the highest-rated NFL divisional round game in primetime on any network in 11 years. (By contrast, when the two teams met in the regular season, the game drew a 19.5/36 overnight rating/share.)
It was the second-highest rated AFC divisional game in 18 years, trailing only the matchup between the Los Angeles Raiders and Buffalo Bills in 1994.
The peak ratings for last night game between 9 p.m. and 9:30 p.m. ET, which shouldn't be a huge surprise. That's right about when the game was still competitive and right about when Tom Brady decided to unleash a pair of touchdowns to send the Pats into the locker room with a 35-7 lead.
Considering the vast differential in the score and the blowout factor, it's a real testament to the drawing power of Tim Tebow's Broncos and Brady's Patriots, especially when pitted against one another.
That, and the NFL's constantly growing popularity.
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