Every February Americans gather around their televisions to celebrate Super Bowl Sunday. The Super Bowl, the NFL’s Championship game, is the single biggest TV event in the United States. Nearly every household tunes in.
Betting is completely off the chain. Have a hunch which team will win the coin toss? Place a bet. How much time will have elapsed when the first points are scored? Place a bet. Food, money and good fellowship are all in ample supply. Most Americans believe The Super Bowl is the biggest sporting event on earth, but is it?
In a word, no.
The biggest television audience for a Super Bowl was the 2015 match up between the New England Patriots and Seattle Seahawks. That game drew 114.4 million viewers in the U.S., and an estimated 30-50 million internationally. Big numbers for sure, but they pale in comparison to viewers of The World Cup.
During the 2014 World Cup final in Brazil, more than one billion people tuned in to see Germany knock off Argentina. Among those viewers, a staggering 695 million watched at least 20 consecutive minutes.
On the money front, the Super Bowl generates an estimated $620 million of the NFL’s revenue. That one game helps make the NFL the leading money maker among all professional sports leagues. The NFL’s total for the full 2017 season was more than $14 billion.
Although the World Cup lasts just a month and features only 64 games, its 2018 revenue is estimated to have exceeded $5 billion. In one month. That’s more than $78 million generated per World Cup game.