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Here's what happened to NFL ratings on the first Sunday of the 2018 season

The NFL saw some ratings drop, but mostly increase after the first Sunday of their opening week for the 2018 season, despite public controversy. (Maddie Meyer/Getty Images)

The ratings for the National Football League are being watched closely to see if political controversies and boycotts are making a dent against the television behemoth. And the ratings for the first Sunday of the season are in.

Thursday night kick-off flounders

The opening day kick-off game of the 2018 NFL season did very poorly in the ratings. According to Deadline, the opening game between the Philadelphia Eagles and the Atlanta Falcons fell in ratings by 13 percent from the season opener last year.

That is also the worst the opening game has done since nearly a decade in 2009.

Some pointed to the fact that the game started an hour late as part of the reason for the fall in ratings.

Sunday games show an increase

Despite the poor showing of the first game, the NFL did much better for the first Sunday of the 2018 season.

CBS celebrated their NFL ratings in a statement touting a 23 percent increase in the household/rating share from last year. It also marked the best week one rating in three years.

Fox ratings for their NFL games saw a 5 percent increase from last year, but that was down 16 percent from their 2016 ratings.

The primetime Chicago Bears and Green Bay game had a ratings drop of 9 percent from last year.

"I just find it hard to watch"

President Trump had knocked the NFL after the ratings for the first game of the season came out.

"Just like the NFL, whose ratings have gone WAY DOWN," he tweeted, "Nike is getting absolutely killed with anger and boycotts. I wonder if they had any idea that it would be this way?"

"As far as the NFL is concerned," he added, "I just find it hard to watch, and always will, until they stand for the FLAG!"

The president was referring to the public outcry against Nike Inc. for spotlighting Colin Kaepernick in their new advertising campaign. Although the initial response was a drop in stock prices, a recent market analysis said sales increased since the controversial ad.

Here's a news video about kneeling protests at Sunday's NFL games:

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