Will the NFL’s Deflategate Controversy Increase Super Bowl Viewership?

Will Patriot's Deflategate Increase Super Bowl ViewershipDid he do it? Could Tom Brady of the New England Patriots actually have deflated his footballs more than one pound per square inch giving him a squishy advantage over the Indianapolis Colts in the sloppy, rainy AFC playoff game? If you believe the plethora of mass media, it’s obvious guilty before charged is the modus operandi.

Every good story has two elements. The good guy and of course the seedy bad dude. You need someone to root for right? Add in a big, fat dose of juicy conflict and bingo, you have a storyline filled with truckloads of controversy.  So will the Super Bowl draw more viewers than in previous years thanks to deflategate?

The 2014 big event captured 104 million viewers. According to a recent Forbes article, recent studies suggest a plethora of viewers will tune in to watch the commercials. With a 30-second spot running $4 million and a 60-second commercial costing a whopping $8 million, it’s no surprise football fans and those that could care less who wins will be tuning in.

But will more of us plan our Super Bowl Sunday viewing to see if the NFL referees keep better guard of the air pressure inside the footballs? Since Monday, January 16th the NFL has been barraged with media speculation that Tom Brady secretly deflated his footballs to give him a better grip to defeat the Colts. No sports fan could get their fill of NFL news without being hit over the head with reports accusing both Brady and Coach Bill Belichick of yet again, cheating their way to victory. In 2007, Coach Belichick was found guilty by the NFL for video taping competing team practices in what was titled ‘spygate.’

Deflategate has no doubt added an extra week of NFL news drama. The question on many media analysts’ minds is, will all this air pressure hoopla will draw more eyeballs to the game than Katy Perry’s halftime show? Absolutely. The event has all the makings of a show filled with suspicion as well as good vs. evil. Conspiracy is better than millions of dollars in advertising and the NFL quite certainly experienced truckloads in free press surrounding deflategate. From former quarterback Tim Hasselbeck’s (Giants, Redskins, Eagles, Bills) tweet, to media pundits all publicly stating Brady is guilty as charged tinkering with air pressures will no doubt glue us all to the big game coverage.

NBC predicts advertisers will need at least 120 million viewers to get more bang for their advertising bucks and marketing executives think we have the makings for one of the most viewed Super Bowl ever.  NFL football air pressure management will no doubt be on the minds of fans both foes and friends of the Patriots.