Even before the final Nielsen ratings are in, the Baltimore Ravens' 16-0 victory over the Browns is assured of being ESPN's lowest rated ''Monday Night Football'' broadcast of this season.
According to figures provided by ESPN, the game drew an overall 7.4 metered market average. Even with a slight change in the final number, it will not surpass the two previous MNF lows, which received an 8.9. Those were San Diego vs. Oakland on Sept. 14, which started at 10:15 p.m., and Atlanta vs. New Orleans on Nov. 2, which played opposite Game 5 of the World Series.
The 7.4 also fell below the game aired in week 10 a year ago. That was San Francisco vs. Arizona on Nov. 10, which drew an 8.5.
In Cleveland, the game delivered a 12.3 rating on ESPN and a 17.5 rating on WJW-Channel 8, for a combined 29.9.
In Baltimore, the game drew a 14.4 rating on ESPN and a 15.6 rating on WJZ (the CBS affiliate), for a 30.0.
Close to 10 percent of homes in this region do not have cable or an alternative delivery system, such as a satellite dish. Also, the disparity of watchers on Channel 8 vs. ESPN may not be unusual since viewers tend to gravitate to their local station.