Before any more people decided they’re fond of the way the 2020 NFL Draft was conducted, Cleveland officials announced plans for next year’s draft extravaganza.
The Greater Cleveland Sports Commission announced the 2021 NFL Draft will be held April 29-May 1 in downtown Cleveland, at locations around FirstEnergy Stadium and the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame.
Assuming the world is back to normal by then, it would be a return to the kind of major event the league was used to conducting before the COVID-19 pandemic forced them into last weekend’s stay-at-home draft.
The league has already announced the 2022 NFL Draft would head back to Las Vegas to make up for the party they missed the chance to host, but Cleveland was already on the books.
“We’re excited for Cleveland to ‘Rock The Clock’ as the host of next year’s NFL Draft and NFL Draft Experience — assuming large gatherings can take place without compromising the well-being of participants,” president and CEO of Greater Cleveland Sports Commission and Destination Cleveland David Gilbert said in a statement. “We, along with our partners at the NFL, the Cleveland Browns and the City of Cleveland, are steadfast in our commitment to ensuring the health and safety of all spectators and participants. We’re working tirelessly to make this the best Draft event yet — for the NFL and its fans as well as for the Cleveland community.”
Of course, the assumption that things will be normal next spring is far from a guarantee, especially if there’s no reliable testing and vaccine procedures in place in the United States.