NFL teams reportedly bracing to do draft from home, alone

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The draft is 18 days away, and ESPN reported on Saturday that “multiple” teams are preparing to conduct the draft exclusively from home.

Those that aren’t should be.

As explained the other day, the April 2 memo sent to all NFL franchises makes it clear that teams will be permitted to draft from their facilities or remotely, one or the other, and that the league currently is determining which approach will be more feasible. Obviously, remote, from-home drafting is the only thing that will be feasible, given the clear “stay at home” orders in place in nearly every state where the NFL does business. (Of the states that host NFL teams, only Missouri hasn’t issued a “stay at home” order.)

The April 2 memo likely represented a face-saver for the NFL, since only two days earlier the league had said teams would be allowed to gather in off-site “small war rooms” of up to 10, without acknowledging the obvious conflict between that approach and the various “stay at home” orders. By Thursday of last week, someone apparently realized that the “stay at home” orders could be an issue — especially if the league’s position will continue to be that the same rules must apply to all teams.

If only one state says to the league, “Sorry, but you’re not getting a dispensation to have a meeting in the office because you’re no different than any other business that has to conduct its meetings from home,” then everyone will be drafting from home.

And even if there’s a way the league can somehow thread the needle in every state except Missouri between now and April 23, the smart move is to assume that it won’t happen, and to prepare for conducting the draft from home.

46 responses to “NFL teams reportedly bracing to do draft from home, alone

  1. I believe Missouri Gov. Mike Parson issued a statewide stay-at-home order yesterday.

  2. Maybe they can have the draft in a grocery store since there’s a hundred people in there at different times hoarding paper goods

  3. It’s really not the venue that is as critical as the ability to have gotten prepared and then, communicate properly, quickly during the draft.

  4. How will we as a society survive this travesty? Might actually make it watchable if the league actually expedites the process.

  5. I’m sorry, bracing for what? Oh my…we have to have a virtual event. That is so….


  6. jredshoes says:
    April 5, 2020 at 10:04 am
    Maybe they can have the draft in a grocery store since there’s a hundred people in there at different times hoarding paper goods

    Yes, can’t believe that absolutely NO govt figure has noticed this and issued a directive for all grocery stores to begin online ordering and curbside delivery where you pull up to a line in grocery parking lot and gloved/masked grocery clerks (who would be much SAFER not having to be in store with hundreds of customers, like they must do now) would have your online order bagged/boxed and put your groceried in your trunk.

    That way NO ONE either customers or store workers wpuld have to be in the store together. The ordering would be online, and the groceries would be boxed waiting to be loaded curbside.

    Because right now getting groceries IS the GREATEST cause of risk to get the virus – and this is a very doable solution.

  7. The Vikings have had their fair share of issues getting their draft picks to the podium on time when most everyone was in the same room, can you just imagine how poorly their Keystone Kops operation is going to screw this situation up.
    It’s going to be quite funny.

  8. Ultimately, it always comes down to the teams with the best personnel operations, and the teams with the smartest top decision maker are going to do best. It doesn’t matter where and how they conduct the draft. If you have accurate evaluations on the players, and a solid philosophy, you’ll do fine.

  9. Sounds to me like the NFL has had their head in the sand. They are just now realizing that they might have to do this?

  10. calizcowboyz says:
    April 5, 2020 at 10:55 am
    Please do not let jerry be alone making the calls. Oh please.

    That would be wildly entertaining though… Just Jerry and a bottle of Johnny Walker Blue and a phone!

  11. This is how thousands of sports fans do it for Fantasy Football. Works out great….I think the PROs can handle it.

  12. No big deal, everyone has access to Zoom and other technologies.

    Looking forward to that 2021 draft after there is no 2020 NFL or college season.

  13. This is certainly going to be the best draft ever. The circumstances around it certainly suck.

    No hoopla and fan fare, believe it or not NFL, that’s what your most hardcore fans want.

    You’re not really a football fan if you think watching the draft while jam packed in a crowd sounds like a good idea.

  14. Im actually looking forward to seeing the draft conducted like this. I just hope that if the GM’s are drafting from home that Gettleman’s wife boards up the liquor cabinet the night before.

  15. Jesus! Half the people in the war rooms don’t need to be there including the owners and team Presidents (except Jerrah!). I’m thinking HC, OC, DC, GM, Scouting director. Seriously, who else needs to be in the war room? Maybe regional scouts? This is very doable. And it will be the highest rated sporting event this year behind the Super Bowl. The only thing I feel bad for is the draftees who don’t get to walk across the stage. That moment for them is gone, which is fine. And, I get that back in the day, they didn’t do that, but for these kids, that’s all they know when they think of the draft. So in that respect, I feel bad. Maybe they can do a photo op for the guys who they were going to invite to the draft at a later date. Stage something. I dunno…

  16. Wisconsin has had a “stay in place” order since March 23rd.

    I can’t see where this draft would be substantially different than any others considering the circumstances. Sure we won’t get the TV produced hype,… but I won’t miss that.
    My only concern was getting possible trades completed in the time allowed,… especially on day 2 or 3 when the time limit is much shorter. Otherwise the Team IT mgr should be able to link all the important staffers to Gutey and LaFleur with Zoom or some other software.

  17. cueghost says:
    April 5, 2020 at 11:51 am
    calizcowboyz says:
    April 5, 2020 at 10:55 am
    Please do not let jerry be alone making the calls. Oh please.

    That would be wildly entertaining though… Just Jerry and a bottle of Johnny Walker Blue and a phone!

    Haha i agree on the entertainment side of it, priceless. Just it would set my team back years lol. Not that 8-8 isnt a set back already. Heall let him do it!

  18. Cue the divisional rivals hiring clandestine teams to cut the phone/internet wires near a GM’s house.

  19. Can the Bengals just go ahead and sign Burrow before the draft or do they have to wait?

  20. All for an altered draft, but am curious how it will affect the many calls between teams as well as trade discussions, etc. given the limited time frame between picks.

  21. Just give them more time for their picks, and maybe another couple of minutes if they have a trade hanging fire. Get Dave Chappelle to fill time instead of the talking heads we usually have to listen to.

  22. It’s amazing what really ends up being essential. Your grocery store and the trucks and the supply chain is all that matters right now.

  23. C’mon , how great would it be for ” BUZZ” to announce the 1st pick.

  24. I would hope Panthers GM Marty Hurney is with the HC & head scout at least

  25. “nyneal says:
    April 5, 2020 at 3:55 pm
    I hope Joe Pesci and Daniel stern don’t show up.”

    I hope they do show up just so hijinks will ensue.

  26. Really, who do these NFL execs and coaches think they are? Guess what, you are in the entertainment business. Hardly a necessary service (and I love football!).

    Guess what…millions of Americans are likely working remotely from home now. It’s a big change, but we’ve sucked it up without complaining because it’s the right thing to do.

    Do the same. You’re not special. Your draft can easily be done completely remotely. It’s essentially a long meeting. You’re not doing construction or anything that needs to be accomplished on-site.

  27. Ever heard of WEBEX, MS TEAMS, ZOOM or a dozen other meeting platforms? It’s not hard to do a meeting remotely.

  28. Bracing? In what universe does billionaires hiring soon-to-be millionaires over the phone or computer count as a hardship?

  29. Ever heard of WEBEX, MS TEAMS, ZOOM or a dozen other meeting platforms? It’s not hard to do a meeting remotely.

    Harder is figuring out how to scale it to 32 different teams, predict any outage issues, AND find a way to televise it in a way that is coherent to an audience of bored millions. If any of this occurs to you as being easy and turnkey you don’t know what you’re talking about.

    Fortunately the NFL is deep with resources and I look forward to seeing their innovation.

  30. I just hope that the NFL network and ESPN practice this new setup before it airs, like a dry run. They already talk over each other so much it becomes annoying-Be quiet Michael Irvin- we don’t need 4 people talking then 5 seconds of uncomfortable silence after everyone noticing too late it’s a mess. The lag times will make it worse. For the love of God please, send everyone a decent web cam and mic. If YouT**ers on tight budgets can produce a decent product, then so can guys who made millions.

    There is a real chance this could be the most watched draft in history. What else ya gonna do?

  31. so like everyone else that can they will be working from home too. I think what people are going to find is leaving your house everyday to go swap germs and waste a solid hour talking to people isn’t really required to push some buttons and make some calls. This isn’t real work… you aren’t saying.. hey take that ten tons or rocks and move them over there.

  32. give each team 4 hours to make their pick and start it up now.. let it roll on for 3 weeks.. give em 30 minutes less each round.

  33. The NFL is ‘BRACING’ to do the NFL draft at/from home! This enraged me. Here’s why? It will take an act of God with the wrath of a plague, (pestilence-like), to change the format and/or of the freakin NFL draft!

    Are you kidding me?

    We are in the middle of a pandemic in our country and throughout the world. When it comes down to teams, some fans, and NFL executives bickering over the location and possible dates being modified for the draft, we should start counting our own blessings, especially people like us, who have survived COVID-19, thus far, AND DO SOMETHING ABOUT IT!!!!!!!!

    Like COVID-19, I, nor the virus does not care if you’re black, white, Asian, Native American, etc., or Republican, Democrat, or Independent, we can all help at some capacity. Hospitals need plasma and blood donations.

    There are families in our country, out of work, trying to figure out how they will eat, pay rent, keep the lights on, and for some people, file a tax return very quickly, so they can get there allocated stimulus money, which may or may not carry them through the apex of this pandemic.

    When I read this article, it upset me because the NFL should find a way to raise money for those less fortunate/in need, and raise money in the communities that will directly go to a contract worker, who is out of work and doesn’t know if they will survive this pandemic.

    The NFL and NFLPA need to use this gigantic draft platform to raise as much money as possible and direct all efforts to help first responders and hospitals acquire much needed equipment to save lives!

    Come on everyone, let’s do our part to help!

  34. I dont believe this. Cases are going to 0 quickly that’s what the president said.

  35. They did it by phone early in the 20th century. The technology is better now. If they can’t handle this, then they are in pretty sad shape.

  36. “There is a real chance this could be the most watched draft in history. What else ya gonna do?”

    Clean my garage, clean my basement, pretty much anything but watch the draft which I haven’t for many years. I find watching paint dry and grass grow more exciting than the draft.

    And given you can spend about 1 minute for every 4 hours of draft running through the picks online, I have zero need to watch this

  37. amazing how trivial sports are these days. It’s not that important to me and I don’t know if it ever will matter as much as it used to…

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