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Patriots’ Blowout Is No. 4 Monday Night TV Audience This Season

Deion Branch #84 of the New England Patriots
Deion Branch #84 of the New England Patriots scores on a 25-yard touchdown reception in the first quarter against Antonio Cromartie #31 of the New York Jets at Gillette Stadium on December 6, 2010 in Foxboro, Massachusetts. Photographer: Elsa/Getty Images

Dec. 7 (Bloomberg) -- The New England Patriots’ 45-3 blowout of the New York Jets drew an 11.2 overnight rating on ESPN, the fourth-highest of the 14 “Monday Night Football” telecasts this season.

National ratings will be released later today, the Walt Disney Co. network said.

The best overnight rating for a “Monday Night Football” game this season was 12.3 for the New York Giants’ Oct. 25 win over the Dallas Cowboys. That game drew 17.9 million viewers. The record for a cable television audience is 21.8 million for Brett Favre’s return to Green Bay during a Monday night game in October 2009.

While the Patriots-Jets matchup marked the fourth time in 40 years that National Football League teams with 9-2 records or better met on “Monday Night Football”, New England’s win equaled the second-biggest rout in the program’s history.

Overnight ratings measure the number of viewers in the biggest U.S. cities. Final national ratings include numbers from smaller television markets.

To contact the reporter on this story: Erik Matuszewski in New York at matuszewski@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Michael Sillup at msillup@bloomberg.net

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