After a strong first round, overall NFL draft ratings down 3 percent from last year

Fans watch the draft stage during the third day of the NFL football draft, Saturday, April 27, 2024, in Detroit. (AP Photo/Paul Sancya)

NEW YORK (AP) — After posting strong numbers for the first round, viewership for the NFL draft was down 3% from last year on TV and digital platforms.

The draft averaged 5.74 million viewers for the three days this year across ABC, ESPN, ESPN2 and NFL Network after averaging 5.93 million in 2023 according to the league and Nielsen.

The first round, where six quarterbacks were selected, averaged 12.1 million viewers, a 6% increase over last year. It was the highest day one viewership since 2021, when there was an average audience of 12.6 million.

The last two days saw a drop-off though, with a dearth of compelling storylines.

The league and Nielsen said 53.6 million tuned at some point over the three days to watch the draft festivities from Detroit.