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Draft coverage combines for 5.9 rating

The SportsXchange

ESPN and NFL Network combined to average a 5.9 overnight Nielsen rating in first round coverage of the NFL Draft on Thursday night, according to Sports Business Daily.

The rating was the same as last year and tied for second-best first round overnight, behind 2010, the first year the draft aired in primetime.

The 5.9 combined rating is a 14 percent increase over 2011.

ESPN's share of the rating was a 4.6, down by 4 percent from 2012, up 7 percent from 2011 but down by 15 in 2010.

NFL Network got a 1.2, up from a 1.0 rating last year, a 0.9 rating in 2011 and a 1.0 rating in 2010.

Between the two networks, Buffalo was the highest-rated market with a combined 11.9 local rating, followed by New Orleans (10.8) and Baltimore (10.1).

The draft was also competing against NBA playoff games on TNT on Thursday. The early primetime game between the Miami Heat and Milwaukee Bucks got a 1.9 overnight, while the Los Angeles Clippers-Memphis Grizzlies game in the later primetime spot got a 2.2 overnight.
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