For over two weeks, the city of New Orleans has been in an almost non-stop outrage over the controversy surrounding the NFC Championship Game that deprived them of a chance to return to the Super Bowl. The outrage has been expressed in lawsuits, billboards, newspaper headlines, and even the U.S. Senate floor.
But the day of the Super Bowl saw many fans participating in a “Boycott Bowl,” where fans went out and partied instead of watching the big game.
As it turns out, the Boycott Bowl was more than mere lip-service, and the numbers reflect it.
According to Jeff Duncan of The Times-Picayune, the city of New Orleans drew a 26.1 rating. The mark was the lowest of any market in the country and the lowest ever for the city of New Orleans.
#NOLA has spoken. Super Bowl LIII earned a 26.1 rating in New Orleans, the lowest of of any market and the lowest ever in New Orleans.
#NOLA has spoken.
Super Bowl LIII earned a 26.1 rating in New Orleans, the lowest of of any market and the lowest ever in New Orleans.
— Jeff Duncan (@JeffDuncan_) February 4, 2019
The controversy erupted in the final two minutes of the fourth quarter of the NFC title game in New Orleans – a game that had already been very contentious due to perceived missed calls throughout the game.
The biggest missed call was a seemingly-blatant pass interference committed on Saints wide receiver Tommylee Lewis by Rams defender Nickell Robey-Coleman. No flag was thrown, which later forced the Saints to kick a field goal on the drive.
The Rams would tie the game after the Saints field goal and forced overtime.
After the defense picked off Saints quarterback Drew Brees, the Rams kicker booted a 57-yard field goal to win the game and go to the Super Bowl.
If nothing else, the lesson to be learned is that when the city of New Orleans sets out to do something for their beloved Saints, they do not mess around.