First night of NFL draft draws record 15.6 million viewers

Cincinnati among top 3 cities that tuned in
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Posted at 9:04 PM, Apr 24, 2020
and last updated 2020-04-24 22:09:29-04

The first night of the NFL draft averaged a record 15.6 million viewers on television, easily shattering the record set six years ago.

Thursday night's first round was aired on ABC, ESPN, NFL Network and ESPN Deportes.

The coverage peaked from 8:45-9 p.m. ET, according to Nielsen, when 19.6 million viewers tuned in.

It is also a 37% increase over last year's audience, which was 11.4 million. The previous record for the most-watched round was 12.4 million in 2014, when the draft was held in early May. 

ESPN reports that Columbus, Cleveland and Cincinnati were the top three markets for NFL draft viewership.