Super Bowl coverage draws a blank in New Orleans

What if they televised a Super Bowl and nobody watched? That certainly seemed to be the case in New Orleans on Sunday.

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Fans in the Crescent City, already miffed by a non-call in the NFC Championship game two weeks ago they believed cost the Saints a shot at Super Bowl LIII, held a daylong protest party downtown Sunday.

Not to be undone, the front page of Monday's Times-Picayune was mostly blank, except for the newspaper's masthead and type in the center of the page that read "Super Bowl? What Super Bowl?" There also was another headline at the bottom of the page that read, "Super Boring," Sports Illustrated reported.

The New England Patriots defeated the Los Angeles Rams 13-3 in the lowest-scoring game in Super Bowl history. The contest at Atlanta's Mercedes-Benz Stadium had the lowest television ratings in a decade. According to Nielsen, the game averaged a 44.9 rating in the 56 markets it measured, the Los Angeles Times reported. 

According to a tweet by Times-Picayune columnist Jeff Duncan, Sunday's game had a 26.1 rating in New Orleans, the lowest in any of the major markets and the lowest ever in the city.

"By any standard, this was one of the least watchable games in the history of the event," Duncan wrote in his postgame column for the Times-Picayune. "The game was utterly devoid of drama, excitement or controversy. It made one of Bill Belichick's press conferences seem thrilling by comparison."

The Times-Picayune has never been shy about publishing blunt front pages, Sports Illustrated reported. After a stunning upset loss to Minnesota on the final play of a postseason game during the 2018 season, the newspaper's headline the following day was "Expletive. Expletive. Expletive."

As the Times-Picayune emphasizes with its design, the game came up a blank.

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