Updated Tuesday, January 15, 2013 at 12:16 AM
About 87 percent of the televisions turned on in the Seattle area were tuned to the electrifying ending to the Seahawks' NFL playoff game Sunday.
Overall, the Seahawks' 30-28 loss to the Atlanta Falcons on Fox earned a 79 Nielsen share for the entire game (meaning the percentage of televisions turned on) and a rating of 45.6 percent of the total TV market in Seattle, according to Jeremy Dietz, research director at KCPQ (Q13).
That translates to 829,000 households and about 1.494 million viewers watching the game in Seattle-Tacoma, Dietz said.
The ratings are higher than any TV event in Seattle since 2006, when the Seahawks lost to the Pittsburgh Steelers in Super Bowl. Dietz said the 2006 Super Bowl drew 926,000 households, a 54.4 rating and 85 share.
"It was beyond our expectations," Dietz said of Sunday's numbers. "The last couple of weeks of the season the numbers started spiking. These playoff games were way higher than anything we've seen in a long time."
Dietz said that the overall number of viewers does not include those watching outside their homes, such as at bars or parties, so the overall number is even higher.
Sunday's game had a higher rating and share than last year's Super Bowl and last week's Seahawks victory at Washington.
Last week, the Seahawks' playoff victory had an overall 46.7 rating, 76 share and 850,000 households.
The Seahawks lost to the Falcons, but Seattle's viewership was higher than Atlanta's. Metro Atlanta drew an overall 39.7 rating and 64 share. At the finish, that grew to 48.1 rating and 71 share.
National ratings weren't available for the game.