By Alan Pergament
Buffalo Bills fans can shout "we're No.1, we're No.1."
Earlier today, I noted the local ESPN rating for the NFL draft Thursday evening was higher than the rating for every prime time series here Thursday except for CBS' "Big Bang Theory."
Now ESPN reports that that Buffalo market was No. 1 in all of the metered markets measured by Nielsen with a 10.3 average rating for the three and a half hours of draft coverage. Another small market, New Orleans, was No. 2 with an 8.6 rating followed by Kansas City (8.4), Baltimore and Birmingham (7.6 each).
While the rating was about 50 percent higher in Buffalo than it was in 2012, nationally the draft rating dropped by about 7 percent to 4.1, according to fast national ratings.
The increase here undoubtedly was because of the interest in which quarterback the Bills would pick in the first round. As everyone probably knows by now, they selected Florida State's E.J. Manuel.
ESPN credits the higher 2012 national rating with the selection of four eventual starting quarterbacks in the first round -- Indianapolis' Andrew Luck, Washington's Robert Griffin III, Miami's Ryan Tannehill and Cleveland's Brandon Weeden. The Bills were the only team to select a quarterback in the first round on Thursday.