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Local Nielsen ratings snapshot (Fri.-Sun., Nov. 13-15) -- Punchless Pokes still pack 'em in

The Dallas Cowboys returned to Fox Sunday. And win or lose, that's never a bad thing for any station's bottom line.

Dallas' 17-7 loss to Green Bay averaged 1,411,550 D-FW viewers, 636,012 of them in the 18-to-49-year-old demographic sweet spot. Nothing else came close, of course, including a competing NASCAR race on ABC that had 128,940 total viewers. Also buried by Cowboys-Packers -- the Dallas Mavericks' road win at Detroit, which drew 33,932 viewers on Fox Sports Southwest. All nine regular season Cowboys games have drawn more than a million viewers.

NBC's marquee Sunday Night Football matchup of the Colts and Patriots dominated the prime-time numbers with 495,400 viewers, with WFAA8's 10 p.m. newscast pulling in a respectable 291,811 viewers to rank as nighttime's second-most watched attraction. On AMC, the 7 to 9 p.m. launch of a new three-part version of The Prisoner had 13,573 viewers locally.

TCU's Saturday night trouncing of Utah on College Sports Channel presumably did quite well in these parts. But the network does not subscribe to the Nielsen Media Research ratings service, so we'll just have to go on assumption. ABC's competing Saturday night attraction of Texas Tech and Oklahoma State averaged 203,589 viewers.

In Friday's local news derby results, WFAA8 continued to inch closer to CBS11 at 10 p.m. with a win in total viewers. The ABC station had 203,589, matching Tech-Okie State. CBS11 ran second with 162,871. Eight weekdays remain in the 20-day November "sweeps," with CBS11 trying to win at 10 p.m. in total viewers for the first time ever.

WFAA8 also finished first at 10 p.m. with 25-to-54-year-olds, the main advertiser target audience for news programming. It's gradually starting to distance itself from CBS11 in this key measurement.

NBC5 added to its 6 a.m. lead with twin wins while WFAA8 ran second in both ratings measurements. Fox4's early morning fortunes have fallen on hard times in the past 7 weekdays. The station will need a big rally to repeat as No. 1. Fox4 swept the November 2008 competitions.

WFAA8 took both of Friday's golds at 6 p.m. while tying Fox4 and NBC5 for first in total viewers at 5 p.m. Fox4 won at the earlier hour with 25-to-54-year-olds.