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Local Nielsen ratings snapshot (Fri.-Sun., Nov. 2-4)

Let's get right to Sunday's larger-than-life sports menu, with the Dallas Cowboys rout of the Philadelphia Eagles of course topping the field.

Dallas' third game this season on NBC's Sunday Night Football averaged 832,569 homes to rank fourth among the season's eight regular season games. It outdrew the Sept. 9th Giants game on NBC (803,748 homes) but ran behind the Peacock's Sept. 23rd Bears game (854,896 homes). Top draw is still the Cowboys' only loss -- to still unbeaten New England. It amassed 884,123 homes for the Oct. 14th CBS telecast.

D-FW football fans warmed up for Cowboys-Eagles by watching the Patriots edge the Indianapolis Colts on CBS. The mid-afternoon/early evening battle of previously unbeatens averaged an imposing 561,406 homes.

Opposite Pats-Colts, ABC's telecast of the Dickies 500 Nextel Cup race at Texas Motor Speedway ran fairly cold with an average of 114,473 homes. Over on Fox, the now 7-and-1 Green Bay Packers' win over Kansas City drew 226,511 total homes from noon to 3 p.m. Sunday. Green Bay will play Dallas on the Thursday after Thanksgiving, with MY27 obtaining the local broadcast rights for a game that otherwise will on cable's NFL Network.

Sunday's biggest non-sports draw, ABC's Desperate Housewives, drew a very respectable 270,352 homes from 8 to 9 p.m. Sunday.

Friday's local newscast derby, on day two of the November "sweeps," put Belo8 in charge at 5, 6 and 10 p.m. in both total homes and among 25-to-54-year-olds, the main advertiser target audience for news programming. NBC5 ran second in both measurements at 10 p.m.

Fox4 again controlled the 6 a.m. Nielsens, but by only a small margin in total homes against NBC5 and Belo8, which tied for second. The station's Good Day won far more comfortably among 25-to-54-year-olds, where it again also beat the three competing network morning shows from 7 to 9 a.m.