On a day that ended in gunfire and tragedy at a country music festival in Las Vegas, Sunday also saw continuing controversy with NFL players kneeling before games, more standing, locking arms, and some sitting during the national anthem.

Several members of the Seattle Seahawks chose to sit beforeSunday Night Football kicked off last night while the Indianapolis Colts decided to link arms in a show of unity for equality and racial justice. At the end of the game the result saw the Colts crushed as the Seahawks scored a blowout 46-18 win.

Whether it was politics or the final score or a mix of both, it was no win for NBC and the NHL last night.

With a 11.0/19 in metered market results, last night’s SNF was down 5% from last week when the Washington Redskins beat the Oakland Raiders 27-10. As the league took another week-by-week ratings hit just a month into the 2017-2018 season, year-to-year, Sunday’s game was also down a bit from last year. Compared to the then season low of the Pittsburgh Steelers’ 43-14 smackdown of the Kansas City Chiefs in primetime on October 2, 2016, last night’s SNF dipped 2% in the early numbers.

On night of competition on the other nets, that 2016 game ended up with a 6.7/22 rating among adults 18-49 and 18.06 million viewers. Against the debut of Star Trek Discovery and more, last week’s 8:30 – 11:15 PM ET Redskins vs. Raiders battle saw a final numbers of 6.3/23 in the key demo and a total audience of 17.48 million.

Now, blowouts are usually always pour cold water on NFL ratings, and all things considered last night’s MM numbers held up OK. However, with the politics that have become such a watched player in their own right in the past few weeks, the league may be very close to having reached a tipping point as of yesterday. Barely ahead of last year’s struggling season in the ratings, the big money NFL now finds itself losing traction in the numbers and public perception.

We’ll update with more SNF numbers later, plus the debuts of Ten Days in the Valley, Ghosted, Wisdom of the Crowd and more later. Right now, we’ll say that last night’s game peaked with an 11.7/19 during the second quarter’s 9:30 – 10 PM slot. Also, here are the Top 10 markets for last night’s game:

  1. Seattle – 42.5/68
  2. Indianapolis – 21.0/33
  3. Portland – 18.9/34
  4. New Orleans – 16.4/23
  5. Milwaukee – 15.3/25
  6. Norfolk – 14.3/23
  7. Richmond – 14.3/22
  8. Denver – 13.7/23
  9. Buffalo – 13.7/21
  10. Kansas City – 13.3/22