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Cowboys vs. Vikings was the most-watched ‘Thursday Night Football’ game ever

In a season of bad ratings, Thursday night was a good sign for the league.

NFL: Dallas Cowboys at Minnesota Vikings Brad Rempel-USA TODAY Sports

A big topic of discussion during the NFL season has surrounded the league’s decreased television ratings. Thursday night featured a game between the Dallas Cowboys and the Minnesota Vikings, which produced the most-watched Thursday night game ever.

The game drew 21.8 million viewers to NBC on Thursday, according to the NFL. The previous record-holder was when the Green Bay Packers and the Detroit Lions played last season in Detroit, when Aaron Rodgers connected with Richard Rodgers for a game-winning Hail Mary.

A decline in ratings and the reasoning for the decline has been oft-debated. Some have blamed officiating, a lack of compelling matchups, a lesser product on the field, boring games, and some have also said there’s really nothing to worry about anyway, especially because ratings are down for others too, not just the NFL.

There are new ways to watch the NFL outside of your locally broadcasted game. You can watch RedZone, where the action is constant and you see almost nothing but highlights and touchdowns.

Thursday Night Football has been on a weekly basis and on network television since 2014. It’s different from Sunday and Monday night games, because each team in the NFL is guaranteed at least one Thursday night game.

Thursday nights typically don’t produce the most entertaining games. With the Cowboys and Vikings garnering the best ratings for that night this season, storylines appear to have something to do with it, as the Cowboys have been one of the best teams this season.