Eli Manning of the New York Giants

Fox's NFC Championship that saw the New York Giants beat the San Francisco 49ers in sudden-death overtime grabbed a huge audience that's becoming typical for the conference championship game that airs in prime time, according to preliminary Nielsen data.

Dan Bell, a Fox Sports vice president, tweeted that the game was the highest rated NFC title game in 17 years (going back to the 1995 game when the 49ers played the Dallas Cowboys).

Kelly Clarkson to perform national anthem at Super Bowl XLVI

The Giants will play the New England Patriots, who won the afternoon game on CBS, in Super Bowl XLVI — a rematch of four years ago in what's sure to be the year's most-watched program. (Kickoff is set for about 6:20/5:20c, Sunday, Feb. 5, NBC.)

Madonna will star in Super Bowl halftime show

ABC's lineup went relatively unscathed, while CBS' shows took a hit and NBC emptied its inventory of the final two episodes of Prime Suspect to relatively execrable numbers. The only downside for Fox was that the length of the game and subsequent postgame show pushed a Sunday edition of American Idol to 11 p.m. ET. (It'll be rerun Tuesday at 8/7c.)

On Saturday night, Lifetime got huge numbers (for Lifetime) with its real-crime original movie Drew Peterson: Untouchable, starring Rob Lowe and Kaley Cuoco -- averaging 5.8 million total viewers, of which 2.2 million were in the coveted 18-to-49 demo, Nielsen said.

Catch up on today's news

8 p.m.
CBS: Undercover Boss 9.17 million viewers (2.2)
ABC: Once Upon a Time 9.30 million (3.2)
Fox: NFC Championship 54.40 million (19.5) {7-10:30 p.m.}
NBC: Dateline NBC 5.98 million (1.3)

9 p.m.
ABC: Desperate Housewives 7.46 million viewers (2.6)
CBS: The Good Wife [rerun] 5.61 million (1.1)
NBC: Prime Suspect 4.26 million (1.4)

10 p.m.
CBS: CSI: Miami [rerun] 6.23 million viewers (1.4 demo rating)
ABC: Pan Am 3.86 million (1.3)
NBC: Prime Suspect 3.64 million (0.7)