NEW YORK >> The Nielsen company says an estimated 18.5 million viewers watched the Golden Globes Awards ceremony on NBC on Sunday night.

That's down from last year's audience of 19.3 million viewers, though NBC notes the Globes telecast faced tough competition with the final 15 minutes of Fox's NFL playoff game.

The Globes broadcast, hosted by Ricky Gervais, was also down from the 2014 telecast, co-hosted by Tina Fey and Amy Poehler, when 20.9 million viewers tuned in. That was the most-watched Golden Globes in a decade.

Gervais returned to hosting duties this year after having presided from 2010 to 2012.