NFL Network, ESPN reporters won’t tip picks during first round


The NFL Draft exists as a mechanism for teams to add young players to their roster, but it is a three-day spectacle because it has become an avidly watched television show.

That led to complaints in recent years that ESPN and NFL Network spoiled the viewing experience by tipping picks before they were announced by NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell. Because of those complaints, the two networks agreed last year that their reporters would not reveal picks ahead of time on television or on Twitter and the same edict will be in effect during the first round next week.

Richard Deitsch of Sports Illustrated reports that the two broadcasters have agreed to keep their reporters from passing on information about picks before they’re announced from the stage. PFT has run polls on the issue the last two years and the results have been strongly in favor of this approach and it definitely makes for a better moment when Goodell is on stage to announce the pick.

Nothing will stop other reporters from reporting what they’ve learned on Twitter, but those who don’t want to know can easily avoid their posts on Thursday night.

33 responses to “NFL Network, ESPN reporters won’t tip picks during first round

  1. I’ll believe it when I see it. These dudes have shown they’re unable to resist the urge to blab the pick before it’s announced.

  2. Goodell should take note from the NFL Network and ESPN.

    When your fans overwhelming support something, do what it takes to please them.

    When your fans overwhelming don’t support something, don’t ignore them and pretend you know what’s best for everyone.

  3. Always hated Boomer tipping picks with his schtick, and wondered why he was so egotistical/dumb so as to think this would somehow be cool or funny..Took away a big part of the Draft experience: the suspense. Agree with the players on the phone part too

  4. Well I guess that means Adam Shefter and Chris Mortensen might as well not even be there.

  5. I can’t wait to see the Vikings draft the next perennial all star quarterback.

    And linebacker.

    And cornerback.

    And safety.

    Our drafting skills are above all.

  6. Another reason why ESPN is unwatchable these days.

    They needed viewer complaints to come in to determine they were jacking up the entertainment aspect. Nice going rocket scientists!

  7. Yeah they didn’t tip the picks last year, but I distinctly remember things like this: “Well [TEAM] needs a QB, I wouldn’t be surprised if they took a QB who fits into their West Coast Scheme. Here are my top 3 West Coast QBs left on the board.”

  8. ESPN and NFLN need to re-evaluate how they approach the draft broadcast. Too much repetitive music, video of the players on some bus in NYC, etc. The producers must be typical idiots in their 20s who only know MTV reality shows. Blech.

  9. Berman is just unwatchable. Always sounds like he’s out of breath and keeps talking about speaking with a cab driver about a pick. That line is almost as old as he is!!! That’s why I watch nfln. Lesser of two evils.

  10. Easy solution, don’t give the media the heads up. Let them find out the same time fans do.

    But since the NFL caters to whatever the media wants this will never happen.

  11. Amen to this. They should have insisted on an element of surprise a long time ago.

  12. It always shocked me that they tipped picks during the actual broadcast, since it takes away the suspense. That said, I have no intention of watching the broadcast but do usually follow the first round and whenever my team is drafting. I think if you want to watch the broadcast, don’t look online or on twitter, but I don’t see a reason to prevent everyone else from knowing earlier. This reminds me of people who complain about spoilers in IMDB threads when they haven’t seen the movie yet.

  13. There are a few things about the draft that drives me insane. First, is the tipping of the picks. Second, is when they spend so much time on the post pick highlight package of that player, that the next pick is going on in the back ground but they are still playing highlights from the previous pick. That annoys the hell out of me. They have 10 minutes between picks. And lastly, I get aggravated watching the player picked take an eternity (looking at you Von Miller). no need to have the player sit in the green room for 9 minutes “composing” himself, hugging his family, his buddies, his agent, his other agent, his other buddies, his agents buddy, his uncle, that guy his dad has known for 40 years, his grandma, is niece, his sister, his cousins, etc. Get on stage, get your hat, take the picture, and get back off the stage to celebrate with your people. When they are waiting on you to move out in order to announce the next pick, its a problem

  14. Totally agree with this recommendation to keep them secret until pick is announced. It adds to the excitement.

    Another suggestion after Round 1, show the highlights of the player being picked, not re-hashing highlights of the top picks of Round 1, 100 times. Give the draftees their own time and their own highlights. Totally agree with someone above, dont have commercials when selection is being made.

    Networks can improve their coverage dramatically.

  15. Watching players glued to their phone after their name was announced was enough for me. I’m done watching. Who are they talking to anyway? Their stock broker?

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