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Local Nielsen ratings snapshot (Fri.-Sun., Nov. 9-11)

Peaking at nearly a million D-FW homes in its final 15 minutes, the Cowboys' big victory over New York otherwise settled for an overall average of 819,376 homes Sunday on Fox.

That's a bit more than the Sept. 9th season opener against the Giants on NBC's Sunday Night Football (803,748). But Sunday's game otherwise pulled in sixth among the nine games to date. Still on top is the Oct. 14th faceoff against New England, which averaged 884,123 homes on CBS.

Fox's preceding Packers-Vikings game drew 287,401 homes, but had to give way to the Redskins-Eagles after the Pack rolled up a big lead. Sunday night's NBC attraction, in which the Chargers upset the Colts, hauled in 345,855 homes while the early afternoon Jaguars-Titans tilt on CBS played in the Pee Wee league with just 116,909 homes.

In other prime-time results Sunday, Fox's The Simpsons stayed strong by beating all competing programming from 7 to 7:30 p.m. in the advertiser-craved 18-to-49-year-old demographic. ABC's Desperate Housewives did likewise from 8 to 9 p.m. DH also tied Sunday Night Football as the top draw at that hour in total homes.

Friday's local newscast derby found Belo8 in its accustomed top spot at 10 p.m. in both total homes and with 25-to-54-year-olds, the main advertiser target audience for news programming. CBS11 ran second in homes, with NBC5 the runnerup among 25-to-54-year-olds.

Fox4 again held serve at 6 a.m. with comfortable twin wins. Belo8 won at 5 and 6 p.m. in total homes but had a tougher time in the 25-to-54 demo. It tied Fox4 for the top spot at 5 p.m. while the Peacock took first at 6 p.m.

In Friday's prime-time numbers, Fox's The Next Great American Band remained a big clinker. The American Idol-ish competition performed especially poorly among 18-to-49-year-olds, where even MY27's Rocky 2 edged it from 7 to 8 p.m.

NBC's Friday Night Lights, in this view the best drama on broadcast television, also continued to struggle. It placed fifth with 18-to-49-year-olds, and its post-writers' strike chances look very dim.