Texans vs. Panthers was the most-watched Thursday Night Football on NFL Network since 2018

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Who knew 7.9 million people couldn’t wait to see Davis Mills make his first start for the Houston Texans?

According to NFL Media, the Texans’ 24-9 loss to the Carolina Panthers in Week 3 was the most-watched NFL Network exclusive Thursday Night Football game since 2018 with 7.9 million viewers consuming the game across television and digital platforms.

The ratings for Texans-Panthers was up 35% compared to last season’s Week 3 matchup, when the visiting Miami Dolphins walloped the Jacksonville Jaguars 31-13.

The most-watched Thursday night game exclusively on NFL Network since 2018 was also a Week 3 game when the New York Jets took on the Cleveland Browns. Incidentally, that was the game where future Texans starting quarterback Tyrod Taylor would get injured and then-rookie first-rounder Baker Mayfield would finish the game to deliver Cleveland a 21-17 win.

NFL Media also says that Texans-Panthers was the most watched television program of Sept. 23.