Fast National ratings for Thursday, September 8, 2011.
On a slightly jumbled Thursday night that also featured President Obama wrangling a primetime block to make a jobs speech (rendering the 8 p.m. hourly ratings meaningless), NBC's NFL Opener between the Packers and Saints had no real competition. 
Although the NFL Kickoff game was down a miniscule amount from last year, that also made it the second-highest rated NBC regular-season primetime game ever. It helped that the match-up of recent Super Bowl champs was a thriller that was still in doubt until the final play.
Among adults 18-49, NBC averaged a 9.5 rating for the night, routing the competition in the key demographic. CBS was a distant second with a 1.7 rating, topping ABC's 1.2 rating, FOX's 0.9 rating and the 0.3 rating for The CW. 
Overall, NBC averaged a whopping 24.47 million viewers in primetime, along with a 14.4 rating/23 share. CBS stayed second with a far-less-impressive 3.8/6 and 5.775 million viewers, beating ABC's 3.2/5 and 4.88 million viewers. FOX averaged a 2.3/4 and 3.27 million viewers, while The CW did a 0.6/1 and 835,000 viewers.
8 p.m. - As mentioned previously, President Obama's address skewed the 8 p.m. hourly ratings for much of the country on most of the networks. NBC finished first with the build-up to the Green Bay/New Orleans game, which averaged 22.76 million viewers and an 8.3 rating among adults 18-49. CBS' "The Big Bang Theory" and a special Fall Preview averaged 6.14 million viewers in second. ABC's "Wipeout" was third with 5.13 million viewers, beating the 3 million viewers for FOX's "Bones." The CW drew 977,000 viewers for "The Vampire Diaries."
9 p.m. - NBC's football coverage really took over in the 9 p.m. hour with 27.56 million viewers and a 10.7 rating among adults 18-49. The game knocked CBS' "Big Brother" down to 6.53 million viewers and a 2.4 key demo rating in second. ABC's "Rookie Blue" averaged 4.475 million viewers and a 1.0 key demo rating, beating the 3.54 million viewers for another "Bones" repeat on FOX. The CW's "Plain Jane" pulled in 694,000 viewers.
10 p.m. - The Packers and Saints averaged 23.08 million viewers and a 9.6 key demo rating for NBC in the 10 p.m. hour. "Rookie Blue" averaged 5.02 million viewers in second, actually beating the 4.65 million viewers for a "Mentalist" repeat on CBS.
All ratings information comes from preliminary Fast National Nielsen data, which includes live and same-day DVR viewing. All numbers are subject to change, particularly in the case of live events.
A long-time member of the TCA Board and a longer-time blogger of "American Idol," Dan Fienberg writes about TV, except for when he writes about movies or sometimes writes about the Red Sox. But never music. He would sound stupid talking about music.