Riders and CFL television ratings both rebound in Week 12

Photo courtesy: David Friedrich/B.C. Lions

One week after the CFL posted its worst television ratings of the 2022 season, the three-down league gained more than 65,000 viewers on average for a minor rebound in Week 12.

The results remain somewhat disappointing given the clash of titans that occurred on Thursday night. After offering two of the most entertaining games of the season earlier in the year, the Calgary Stampeders once again pushed the league-leading Winnipeg Blue Bombers to the brink. However, the start of the Jake Maier era in Calgary attracted just over 400,000 viewers as the Bombers prevailed 31-29.

The opening game of Friday’s double-header dipped below that mark as the Toronto Argonauts delivered a second-half onslaught to defeat the Hamilton Tiger-Cats. The weekly ratings juggernaut that is the Saskatchewan Roughriders once again carried the load, bringing in more than 600,000 eyeballs for the night game. The Riders cruised to victory over a B.C. Lions team missing young superstar Nathan Rourke, but the Canadian quarterback’s absence saw viewership drop only slightly for the rematch between the two clubs.

Saturday’s clash between the hapless Ottawa Redblacks and Edmonton Elks finished the week on a low note, with just over 350,000 tuning in to see Paul LaPolice’s team notch their second win of the season. Fortunately for the CFL, things will be looking up as the league heads into Labour Day weekend — the premier regular-season viewership games.

2022 Week 12 TV ratings:

Calgary at Winnipeg — 417,000

Hamilton at Toronto — 396,000

Saskatchewan at B.C. — 628,000

Ottawa at Edmonton — 354,000

Total Week 12 average: 448,750

(These numbers do not include viewership from RDS, TSN’s French-language affiliate, which has averaged approximately 200,000 viewers for Alouettes games in 2022.)

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