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Eagles-Patriots Super Bowl watched by fewer people

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Stephen A.: Philly is 'one of the greatest sports towns' (1:52)

Stephen A. Smith reflects on the great Philadelphia sports memories, topped off by the Eagles' Super Bowl victory. (1:52)

Super Bowl LII turned into one of the NFL's more memorable games, but fewer Americans were watching.

The Philadelphia Eagles' 41-33 victory over the New England Patriots on Sunday night averaged of 103.4 million viewers on television, according to Nielsen, the lowest Super Bowl viewership since Super Bowl XLIII (Pittsburgh Steelers vs. Arizona Cardinals, 98.7 million) in February 2009.

Each of the past eight Super Bowls and the 1983 Finale of M*A*S*H* (106 million viewers) topped Sunday night's average.

"With an all-time Top 10 audience, the Super Bowl once again proved that it's the most dominant and consistent property on television," Mark Lazarus, chairman of NBC broadcasting and sports, said in a news release.

The game featured the Patriots trying to win their sixth ring in 16 years and the Eagles trying for their first Super Bowl victory in three tries.

The viewership this season marked a 20 percent increase from the last time the two teams played in the Super Bowl (XXXIX, 86 million viewers) in February 2005.

The Patriots played in the most-watched game and broadcast in U.S. history, Super Bowl XLIX against the Seattle Seahawks in 2015. The Patriots also played in the fourth- (XLVI, New York Giants, 2012) and fifth-most-watched (LI, Atlanta Falcons, 2017) broadcasts of all time. The Pats-Falcons Super Bowl had 111.3 million viewers on average.

Buffalo had the highest percentage of viewers, with 56.4 percent of the market watching Sunday night's game, followed by Philadelphia (56.2 percent), Boston (55.9) and the host market of Minneapolis-St. Paul (54.9).