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Local Nielsen ratings snapshot (Fri.-Sun., Sept. 7-9)

Nothing else really mattered Sunday night. Not even Britney's extraordinarily inept performance on MTV's even dumber than usual Video Music Awards.

No, the only game in town was the Dallas Cowboys' season opener against the New York Giants, which averaged 803,748 D-FW homes on NBC5. That's more than six times the audience for ABC's runnerup duo of Extreme Makeover: Home Edition and Meet the Fockers.

But wait, there's more. This was an extraordinary sports weekend that also included the Texas-TCU clash in Austin, the U.S. Open Tennis Final, Tiger Woods' big victory at the BMW golf championship, a pivotal prime-time NASCAR race and three other season-opening pro football games. Here's the D-FW total homes scorecard:

Bears vs. Chargers (Fox) -- 360,469
Eagles vs. Packers (Fox) -- 233,818
Texas vs. TCU (FX) -- 158,314
Redskins vs. Dolphins (CBS) -- 151,007
Chevy Rock & Roll 400 (ABC) -- 107,166
BMW Golf Final Round (NBC) -- 75,504
U.S. Open Tennis Final (CBS) -- 63,732

And oh yes, 26,792 devoted hardball homes watched the Texas Rangers sweep the Oakland A's on MY27 Sunday afternoon to climb out of the American League West basement for at least a day.

In Friday's local news derby, NBC5's first batch of high-definition telecasts all fell short of winner's circles. It might have helped had the station first launched a promotional campaign instead of essentially sneaking them on the air.

Belo8 won comfortably at 10 p.m. in both total homes and with 25-to-54-year-olds, the main advertiser target audience for news programming.

Fox4 did likewise at 6 a.m. in both ratings measurements.

Belo8 took the 5 and 6 p.m. races in total homes and barely nipped NBC5 at 6 p.m. among 25-to-54-year-olds. Fox4 won at 5 p.m. in the 25-to-54 demo.