Let Russ Cook: Seahawks, Patriots highest-rated NFL game on Canadian TV in Week 2

Photo courtesy: Rod Mar/Seattle Seahawks

Canadians wanted to see Russ Cook in primetime on Sunday night.

Russell Wilson and his Seattle Seahawks hosted Bill Belichick and the New England Patriots in Week 2 of the NFL season. Prior to the matchup, Belichick broke his normal press conference form and offered high praise for Wilson.

“This guy’s a tremendous player. Honestly, I think he’s in a way maybe underrated by the media or the fans. I don’t really see anybody better than this player. He can do everything. He’s obviously got great leadership, playmaking skills, he plays very well in the most critical situations in the game — his decision making, running, passing. His passing numbers are extraordinary,” Belichick said in a videoconference.

“You put him up against anybody since he’s been in the league, literally anybody, in any category really. His winning percentage is impressive. He’s there for every game, never missed a game. He’s got a great ability to do the right thing at the right time, he has tremendous vision and sees the field extremely well. I don’t think there’s a better deep ball passer in the league, in terms of decision-making and accuracy.”

Belichick said Wilson attacks literally every inch of the field by using deep balls, finding playmakers in space, scrambles when he needs and is difficult to tackle. Wilson put all those traits on display in a 35-30 victory by throwing for 288 yards with five touchdowns and adding five carries for 39 yards as Seattle improved to 2-0.

The game produced an average Canadian television audience of 864,500 on TSN and CTV. That was a 28 percent increase from Dallas losing to Los Angeles in the same slot during Week 1.

The NFL claimed the three top-rated sports broadcasts on a Sunday filled with competition. The final round of the U.S. Open, game two of the NBA’s Western Conference Finals between the Nuggets and Lakers, and the Blue Jays all played throughout the day.

The NFL was bumped from the No. 1 spot on Monday because 841,200 viewers tuned in for game two of the Stanley Cup Final to see Tampa Bay edge Dallas 3-2 on Sportsnet, tying the series at one apiece.

Week 2 Canadian NFL TV ratings:

Cincinnati at Cleveland: 596,500

1 p.m. ET games: 530,300
4 p.m. ET games: 537,200

Sunday Night Football
New England at Seattle: 864,500

Monday Night Football
New Orleans at Las Vegas: 400,500

Total Week 2 average: 585,500 (11 percent decrease from Week 1)

Justin Dunk is a football insider, sports reporter and anchor.