NFL Draft sees 40% increase in viewership during Day 2 compared to 2019

Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

The 2020 NFL Draft has been a huge hit for the networks.

After shattering the previous record in the first round, the draft saw another significant increase in viewership during Friday night’s broadcast of Rounds 2 and 3 across ABC, ESPN, NFL Network, ESPN Deportes and other digital channels.

Per NFL Media, an average of 8.2 million viewers watched Day 2 of the 2020 NFL Draft, which represents a 40% increase over last year’s draft.

The increase in viewership is easy to understand. Right now, the NFL Draft is the only big sporting event on television due to the COVID-19 pandemic. That, by itself, might be enough for record-setting viewership numbers.

But the NFL has also provided fans with an outstanding product over the course of draft weekend with live shots into the homes of coaches, general managers and the prospects being drafted. That human element has been warmly received by the audience.

On top of that, NFL commissioner Roger Goodell has been humanized in a positive way while entertaining in various ways during the first two days.

The best part? The NFL Draft telethon has raised nearly $100 million for COVID-19 relief.