Canton, Ohio bidding to host NFL Draft in 2019 or 2020

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Canton, Ohio, home of the Pro Football Hall of Fame, recently submitted an application to host the NFL Draft in either 2019 or 2020. David Baker, the president of the Hall of Fame, confirmed that during a speaking engagement Monday.

“I can’t guarantee it’s going to happen,” Baker said, per the Canton Repository. “But we’re gonna fight awful hard for this thing.”

Baker said last year that he envisioned 2019, the NFL’s 100th season, as a “special time” and a great occasion for Canton to host the draft.

Chicago hosted the draft this year and will host again in 2016. Prior to that, the draft had been held in New York City since 1965.

A major construction project at the Hall of Fame in Canton is underway and includes the recent demolition of the north stands at the adjacent Tom Benson Stadium, formerly Fawcett Stadium and the annual home of the Hall of Fame induction ceremonies and Hall of Fame Game. The Hall of Fame Village project will include a retail center, a four-star hotel, youth football facilities and a training center.

The official Hall of Fame parade, inductees dinner and other events are held each August in Downtown Canton. Whether Canton would host the draft in the Hall of Fame Village, at the aging Canton Civic Center or somewhere else remains to be seen.