Goodell says future timing of draft hasn’t been decided

Getty Images

Good news, football fans.  The incursion of the draft into May may be only a one-year experiment.

NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell tells Jeff Darlington of NFL Media that the timing of future drafts has not been determined.  Which means that it could stay in May, and that it could go back to April.

This year’s delay ostensibly arose from a scheduling conflict at Radio City Music Hall, where an Easter-related event was planned for what would have been yesterday, today, and/or tomorrow.  That event eventually was canceled due to lack of interest.

Bad news, football fans.  There’s still a chance that the NFL has become completely tone deaf regarding the potential for suffering the same fate as the Easter-related event that was canceled due to lack of interest.

Goodelll also tells Darlington that the seven-round draft could become a four-day affair.  Four days.  Four.  Freaking.  Days.

Already, three days are one too many.  Sure, there’s now something special about having round one on a Thursday night.  And rounds two and three have some extra relevance by standing alone on Friday.

But only a small fraction of the fan base cares zealously about the final four rounds.  As currently constructed, the third day of the draft feels like it never will end.

Stretching it out to four days makes sense only if the NFL is considering moving the final two days of the draft to another city, rotating it from towns like Pittsburgh to Cleveland to Philly to Dallas and creating intense local interest for a large chunk of the process in which national (and New York City) interest is much, much lower.

I’ve been at Radio City Music Hall for every day of the draft since it was expanded to a three-day affair.  The energy (and crowd) of the first night fades noticeably by the second night.  By the third day, the crowd thins and the buzz evaporates and it feels like everyone is just trying to get through to the last pick so they can pack up and go home.

Meanwhile, the league also seems to be pushing back against the notion that it was a mistake to move the draft to May.  New Bucs coach Lovie Smith tells Darlington that Lovie likes having extra time, especially as a new coach in a new city.  While he may feel that way this year, after a full season out of the sport, how many Mother’s Day weekends will he spend working before he’s sleeping at the office not for work-related reasons?

That’s the other issue that’s currently driving a wedge, we’re told, between football operations employees and the league’s business people.  The latter will make it to Mother’s Day church services and/or brunch and/or dinner this year.  The former will instead be chasing undrafted free agents, placing further strain on family relationships already tested by a profession that creates plenty of stress without devoting two more weeks to jobs that already overwhelm the lives of coaches, General Managers, and scouts.

So even if the draft stays in May for future years, here’s hoping that a league that allows the widespread uniform infiltration of the color pink in October for breast cancer awareness will show equal respect to wives and mothers by steering clear of the one day of the year in which they receive the credit, praise, and attention they deserve for the sacrifices they make on the other 364.

109 responses to “Goodell says future timing of draft hasn’t been decided

  1. When is this Commissioner going to learn that too much change is not a good thing. If he isn’t careful, Goodell will go down in history as the Commissioner who killed the goose that laid the golden eggs.

  2. Florio, can you put up a poll for How many people would want to draft to go back to a two day, Saturday and Sunday event vs. the current format?

  3. Imagine the nerve of Goodell, doing exactly what he is paid to d0–find ways to make money for the NFL, get the brand out there in 1000 different ways, mining the gold that is the NFL, experimenting with different ideas. He should be ashamed.

  4. The only thing Goodell is good at is making the owners money, which is why he’ll be in position for as long as he wants.

    From a fans perspective, everything he touches turns to crap. The game has gotten worse, and the fan treatment is abysmal.

    Worst sports commissioner in history. (for fans)

  5. Goodell is th eworst commissioner I have ever seen in my life. I had Rozelle, Tagliabue and now this guy? If they don’t change it back to where it was it would be just pure arrogance. It needs to go back because we don’t need 2 months of mock drafts.

  6. This is going to be unpopular but..

    If the ratings are higher this year than last, they aren’t moving it. Why would they?

    Mock drafts are irrelevant, what are they on mock draft 5.7.43? Stop reading them and they will stop making them.

    The draft moving two weeks shouldn’t impact your life this much.

    However, I do like the Sturday-Sunday drafts vs. Thursday. We used to play madden all day when watching the draft.

  7. The draft is like a guys’ weekend in Vegas.

    1 day = too short.
    2-3 days = perfect.
    4 days = too long.

  8. Hey Goodell, you should hold the 7 round draft over the entire summer. After every pick, we could watch the ‘experts’ update their mock drafts, then repeat. You know the NFL fans, if there’s one thing we like it’s to be beaten to death with mock drafts. If there’s two things we like it’s to be beaten to death with mock drafts and paying excessive prices to attend games or buy merchandise.

  9. It is pretty surprising how much Goodwill the NFL is burning. I went from an enthusiastic fan in the 90’s and early aughts- to one that resents the fact that i watch it. The greed gets a bit overwhelming.

    Making changes to defense that makes QB’s even MORE important, Football on Thursdays, attempts to increase the season, attempts to get fans to pay for playoff games before they even happen, increasing the number of playoff teams to make the regular season less important, changing the draft to three days needlessly, and now a FOUR DAY DRAFT?

    I just am tired of it- I spend my time thinking, “why do i follow this sport again?”

  10. I always loved the old Sat-Sun model. Always had a party for it. If nothing else it was a good reason to get drunk and talk football in April ALL weekend. Also, wouldn’t mind them going back to the 12 round model either.

  11. So who’s the stooge here, Goodell or the owners? Everyone wants the draft in April and no one wants to drag out the Draft longer than it needs to be.

    Listen to the fans, please.

  12. Whatever makes them more money, more or less is what he’s saying… That’s all he EVER says…

  13. Please go back to the way it was – Rounds 1-3 on Saturday and Rounds 4-7 on Sunday – in April.

    Nothing was better than a Saturday morning draft breakfast feast.

    Also waiting all day on Thursday is annoying. It was better to have trade downs in round 1 and then seeing who your team would pick the same day later in round 2, etc.

    Actually the whole thing is too played out and diluted now. Too many draft shows. Too many mocks. Too many smokescreens. Its overwhelming to the point of developing apathy in the causal fan.

    This is a mistake by the NFL.

  14. It must be a great feeling to go through life knowing that you are right in every decision that you make and getting paid $44M last year to recognize your perfection. Most NFL fans eagerly look forward to the day that Roger Goodell departs. He will probably get an even bigger payout when it happens.

  15. He’s going to wait til he sees the TV ratings before he makes those decision. If more people tune in to watch the draft this year his going to prolong it every year. It’s just his way of being greedy…….. yet again.

  16. “That’s the other issue that’s currently driving a wedge, we’re told, between football operations employees and the league’s business people. The latter will make it to Mother’s Day church services and/or brunch and/or dinner this year. The former will instead be chasing undrafted free agents, placing further strain on family relationships already tested by a profession that creates plenty of stress without devoting two more weeks to jobs that already overwhelm the lives of coaches, General Managers, and scouts.”

    Welcome to the rest of the working class world.

  17. The NFL master plan is to add two more weeks to the regular season, which will start one week earlier and end one week later, with two bye weeks per team, and eight games in London; add another round of wild card play-offs, and push the Super Bowl to the first Sunday in March.

    Which makes holding the Draft in the first or second week of May- about right.

  18. I’m actually surprised that Goodell didn’t have the draft coincide as a tie-in with the NFL script and team approved film “Draft Day” … have “Draft Day” open on a Wednesday, followed by Thursday draft day, Saturday draft day and Sunday draft day; also, release the film overseas that Friday so that your brand can be increased by Kevin Costner and Jennifer Garner while they observe how obsessively silly Americans are over this sport and these days…

  19. The NFL under Roger Goodell has long ceased to care about the fans. Under Roger, he has made it a priority to get each and every owner a brand spanking new stadium as long as the taxpayers foot the bill for the poor multi billionaires.

  20. Translation:
    We don’t care what you think. We’ll make more money doing what we want despite what you like or enjoy about our product.

    We now print corporate dollars and individual hard working fans mean nothing to us.

  21. I used to have NFL draft parties all day Saturday, then watch all Sunday with a big hangover. Now I watch Thursday night, and maybe part of Friday. I wasn’t even aware the NFL draft was still longer than 3 rounds! I guess I should be thanking the NFL for giving me back my entire weekend, and my health.

  22. As a former employee of a football team, it is not only the football operations employees that are required on draft days – it’s anyone who supports them. Building operations, IT, even finance.

  23. And once again the mouth breathers have no idea that Goodell works for the NFL owners. He does their bidding and provides a buffer between the owner and fan base when controversial decisions about the league come forward.

    When things like expanding playoffs, 18 game schedules, changes to hits because of concussions, kickoffs, extra points, etc, — ALL OF IT. It’s the owners will, not Goodell’s. Got it?

    Some of you do. Some of you never will.

  24. I find it hysterical that people consult Lovie with regard to the draft process. He has proven over time that he has no concept of talent evaluation, player projections, or draft value. That’s why there is virtually no one of consequence on the Bears from the draft classes after his power grab following the SB appearance in the 2006 season. Angelo takes the heat, but Lovie was pulling the strings from 2007 on.

  25. Goodell is a greedy worm of a man. Always trying to fix what isn’t broken. Why not just have the Draft be 7 nights, one per round, right in the middle of prime time so he can charge top dollars for 30-second spots? Or better yet, let’s have the Draft last 7 weeks, with each round spread out over 7 nights during prime time every single night of the week! That way we can have all the NFL Network minions try and pound the product down our throats for 49 straight days and nights! Imagine the profits! Awesome. Sign me up.

  26. and the disinterest continues………..the NFL Channels ratings must be dipping………after all, how may hundreds of mock drafts can they be expected to develop and keep fan interests……I actually feel sorry for them….

  27. Mid April, that way they can get signed and join there teams for work outs, and OTA’s. Also just make teams selection time shorter, 10 minutes. By the time the draft comes you have done PLENTY of scouting, with the combine, private workouts (like 20), study college film, Senior bowl, pro days, you should know who you gonna pick and a backup plan.

  28. I remember when I watched the NFL draft. It was a Saturday/Sunday affair with analysis and highlights of every player picked – even in the late rounds. Not just talking heads talking while ignoring the picks.

  29. NFL owners are just like politicians. The people will forget about a couple of slip ups but when you push it too far you will never be forgiven. Cuban was right in what he was saying.Greed and over regulation is killing football.

  30. They still need cut the first round time limit from 10 minutes to 6 or 7. I remember when it was 15 minutes between picks which was insane.

  31. This guy is truly terrible.

    How do you get rid of Goodell? Seriously. Fans need to send a message to the owners that they want Goodell fired. He is wrecking the game. The London thing is a horrible idea. He penalizes defense to no end. He has wrecked the draft.

  32. I used to throw a kegger when the draft was on Saturday because it was the weekend, I didn’t have to work the next day, I was young, and the NFL was awesome.

    Now. Everything listed above is the opposite.

  33. What did you expect from a league who just used it’s schedule release to make a prime time TV show out of a non event that should have supplied no doze to the 40 or so viewers?

    However, it didn’t matter because advertisers paid big bucks to hawk their products. And THATS why the NFL draft will soon be a 4 day snooze event after the first 2 rounds

    Not because “the fans demand it”, it’s because the NFL can vacum in even more cash.

  34. The draft is like the weather. Everyone complains about it but never does anything about it.

    Don’t watch it and things will change. I suspect, though, that the Thursday PM prime time rating will be higher than any previous Day 1 Saturnday rating. Therefore, no change.

  35. I don’t really understand why it’s detrimental to the league to have the draft two weeks later.

    Do I like it being later? No.

    Is the NFL losing interest in the draft, or losing fans of the NFL altogether? Not in the slightest.

    It’s a two week difference folks. It’s not the end of the world. The offseason hasn’t been made any longer, and I’ll still be tuned in two weeks from now as I would have been last night, just like everyone else who is a true football fan.

  36. Mark Cuban is going to proven right because of this clown. Everything that they have done with the NFL Draft over the last few years has been wrong.

    They need to move the draft back to April and need to make it Saturday/Sunday again. It is ridiculous that they would try and milk another day out of this.

  37. hey GODdell, can’t you commit to anything!

    you sounds like a real flipp-flopper to me and there’s no room for you peepal stadning behind the SHEILD!!

  38. No, it hasn’t been decided yet because they’re waiting to see if this revenue experiment draws the higher ratings they are hoping for in the May sweeps.

    This move does not seem beneficial for any other practical purpose other than more money.

  39. its almost as if they do the complete opposite of what fans want…Guess we should be clamoring for a 10 day draft event!!! They will then cut it to 1 day

  40. I miss the one weekend draft so much. Moving it back to may was just a slap in the face to the real draft fans. I can tell you I love the draft and this year I’m losing interest and I’m tired about hearing how bad bridgewater is and how good manziel is. MOVE IT BACK TO APRIL

  41. Go ask NASCAR about making changes.

    The once fastest growing spectator sport is now slowly dying away. They aren’t bringing in new fans, can’t sell out seats, and the TV ratings are down.

    All within about 15 years. Listen to Cuban.

  42. Pure arrogance by Goodell and League. The draft needs to return to April. But unless fans show the displeasure Goodell won’t do anything.

    We fans need to make a statement less viewership would hit them where they live. First round in prime time is okay but a separate day for the second round?? No thanks.

  43. Mark Cuban was right. Let that merinate for a minute. A few weeks ago he was jealous, but now many of us are agreeing with him. Goodell and his marketing madness is going to oversaurate the market.

    They’ve already priced me out of going to see the games in person b/c for less than $100 you can’t distinguish numbers on jerseys or you watch the screen…which you could do for free at home and not pay $7 for a hot dog and $8.50 for a pop, now they are going to spread the “players 97% of us have never heard of” over 2 more days?

    This is reminding me of the day I ate all of my Halloween candy in 2 days…I went a full 2 years before I could even LOOK at candy. Goodell is taking us that route.

  44. ‘…Goodelll also tells Darlington that the seven-round draft could become a four-day affair. Four days. Four. Freaking. Days.”

    Goodell is truly the worst & the NFL owners will rue the day they ever made him the commissioner. I believe Mark Cuban more & more every day–Goodell is going to kill the goose that lays the golden eggs.

  45. ‘Already, three days are one too many. Sure, there’s now something special about having round one on a Thursday night. And rounds two and three have some extra relevance by standing alone on Friday.’

    The draft should be two days–first day is rounds 1-3 & second day is 4-7. The owners are the biggest pigs on the planet & it’s beyond disgusting. Enough already!!!

  46. Draft should go back to Rounds 1,2,3 on Sat, 4,5,6,7 on Sun…or at the VERY least, Round 1 on Fri night, 2,3 on Sat, 4,5,6,7 on Sun.

    Draft day party was the best.

    Can’t have a decent party on a Thursday night! I have to work, so I can afford the NFL Sunday Ticket.

  47. you want changes. tell the owners they will lose their tax exempt status unless they change. then watch ’em scramble

  48. Minnesota fishing opener on day 3 of the draft, so big drop in Minnesota. Wisconsin opens first weekend in May. Just get it done in late April when nothing is going on!

  49. I won’t watch any of it… I will just see who my team picked then review the scouting reports… Most of the time, unless your team is at the top of the draft, you don’t know the guys they are going to pick anyway… Not the casual college football watcher… So, why waste a whole weekend worried about watching the draft?

    Move it back to April… NBA Playoffs trump NFL Draft… GO WIZARDS!

  50. While you’re trying to grow the NFL Roger, how about growing a spine and some cajones when talking with the owners? Some of these changes just don’t need to be made and are for the sake of pure greed.

  51. I find it impossible that there was a “scheduling conflict” between the multi-billion dollar business that is the NFL and some Easter thing that couldn’t even generate enough interest to actually be held.

    You’re telling me someone who does scheduling for the Radio City Music Hall, that gets a sure thing from the NFL every year, is going to make the NFL change their schedule cause someone wants to do some Easter thing??

  52. wait till he gets the ratings out of Mn …very close to the fishing opening? Heck, mothers days loses out to the opener and so will his little weird draft party.

  53. Of course he hasn’t decided, he hasn’t crunched the numbers after this years draft to come yet to see how many more millions he’s made the NFL AND himself.

    And to make the draft even longer? Again, all about money.

    With Goodell it isn’t about you, it isn’t about me nor is it about any of the fans, it’s about him, business and money. He couldn’t care less what we think, just by NFL merchandise, jerseys, tickets and after that he wants you to shut it.

  54. Goodell wants to see how the ratings go in May and then decide. It’s all about the ratings with this guy. If the ratings look good, then we are stuck with May although clearly the majority of fans think it stinks.

  55. Translation, we are going to see how much money we make holding the draft later. If we make more, it will stay later. If we make less, it will go back to April. Fan concerns are not an issue

  56. The booing that the Commissioner may hear when he walks to the microphone to announce that the Draft has commenced and the Houston Texans are on the clock, is just an expression of profound appreciation of his greatness and sincere thanks for the extra 2 weeks. Napoleon was never disrespected like this.

  57. Not only do I think the draft should go back to late April, I also think the venue should be moved to a different league city every year.

    There’s no reason the draft should always be at Radio City in New York – particularly after having to reschedule the thing because Radio City had other plans- which they subsequently cancelled.

    Nice way to spread the revenue around the country, keep it fresh, etc.

    I think there are lots of venues, particularly in smaller markets, that hosting a 3-day draft event would be a big deal. And they’d do a great job with it too.

  58. I support the NFL 100% on a May draft and Four day process. This is big business. That 7th round pick is the difference between a guy like Marlon Brown getting drafted and scoring 7tds as a rookie and him ending up not getting drafted potentially.

  59. 7 Rounds over 4 days? That’s downright nuts.

    1st round in a single day is nuts, but they barely get away with it…because it’s the 1st round.

    Rounds 2-3 in a day is also light in substance.

    Rounds 4-7 seems good in terms of number of players picked, but by this time half the players won’t make the roster so excitement is much lower, even with having over 4x the picks of round 1 (due to compensatory picks being added).

    I enjoy this 3 day format…but a helluva lot less then the old 2 day format.

    It screws up so many things. People, especially in the Western US, are still at work. They also have to work on Friday, so you just can’t have the same fun, in the 1st round, where it matters, on a weekday.

    Also when do I buy Pizza or Wings? 1st round on Thursday? 2-3rd round on Friday? 4-7 on Saturday? Before it was easy with rounds 1-3 on Saturday, easy choice what day to get food. Now it’s like I start off with Pizza on Thursday, and get wings on Friday, and it all seems out of whack.

    But now they are actually thinking of expanding this to four days? They are nuts.

    If they add 5 rounds of meaningless picks for day four, and needlessly increase the draft to 12 rounds, they could provide something to watch for four days, but again for people that almost certainly won’t make the team, and most wouldn’t even make the practice squad.

    The old format that grew the draft was the best…Rounds 1-3 on Saturday, 4-7 on Sunday.

    If they must have three days, it’s weird to have two of them on weekdays. Leaving the only day where one is off to be the 4-7 round day.

    Also this whole May thing throws everything off. In April, students have time to go draft crazy and still have time for the last test, projects, and finals. Now the NFL is making students choose between school and NFL draft. (luckily I graduated before the change…but it would of really sucked had I been 5-10 years younger)

    The NFL is being very foolish. The NFL draft is in an upswing, so any data they get is faulty. They WRONGLY think that the NFL draft on 3 days is a success. It isn’t. Everyone hates it much more now, but the NFL draft because of NFL engagement being higher, produces better numbers.

    So in reality, people are hating the changes, but the numbers are being misread by the NFL that the changes are positive. Thus they want to make more changes. All based off of faulty data.

    What idiots. Learn how to read faulty data or don’t use it. Because while the three day draft is still fun, but simply a poorer experience then the older 2 day format. A four day draft would be horrible.

    People want to make a day or weekend out of the event. Not have four smaller and inferior hour long experiences spread out over Thursday-Sunday.

    Also wouldn’t most non-football wives rather have it all concentrated in 2 days, rather it taking up 4 days? Because to those that are super committed, they’ll end up spending MORE time via a four day draft as they supplement all the extra time from less picks per day into more forum posts all over the internet. So it’ll be more yapping, less substance, for a total of twice the time taken away from wives who don’t like the NFL. I’m sure they’ll LOVE that.

  60. Why do I have a bad feeling that 50 years later on one of those sports history channel. There is going to be a special with the title “Who killed the NFL” with Roger Goodell Picture on it.

  61. Of course Lovie Smith appreciate s having the extra time. Any Bears fan can tell you that Lovie never does anything until its absolutely necessary and sometimes not even then. Changing up his D, getting rid of old slow players, hiring a real OC etc. It’s a big reason he’s not coaching the Bears anymore.

Leave a Reply