The NFL announced Monday that a select number of fans and prospects will be invited to attend the April 29-May 1 draft in Cleveland.
The entire 2020 NFL Draft was conducted virtually due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
“We are thrilled to be heading to Cleveland for the NFL Draft, which has become one of the most highly anticipated events in sports” NFL executive vice president Peter O’Reilly said in a news release. “Just months after executing a safe and successful Super Bowl LV, we look forward to bringing the excitement of our Draft traditions to fans in collaboration with the Browns, Destination Cleveland, Greater Cleveland Sports Commission, the City of Cleveland, and all of our local Cleveland partners.”
Each of the 32 teams will choose fans who have been fully vaccinated to serve as “draft ambassadors.” The NFL did not specify how many fans will be picked.
They will have front-row seats at the NFL Draft main stage, where the pick announcements will be made by commissioner Roger Goodell and other special guests.
Draft festivities will take place at multiple Cleveland locations, including FirstEnergy Stadium, the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame and the Great Lakes Science Center.
“Cleveland welcomes the 2021 NFL Draft to our city,” Mayor Frank G. Jackson said. “Residents and visitors from around the world will experience Cleveland’s hospitality and see why our city continues to be a destination of choice for large-scale events. We look forward to working with the Cleveland Browns, the Greater Cleveland Sports Commission, the NFL and our other partners to execute a safe, successful event in accordance with health and safety guidelines.”
Media crews from NFL Network, ESPN and ABC will also be on-site for the draft.
Prospects who aren’t invited to Cleveland will participate remotely from their homes.
Team personnel involved in the selection process will be permitted to gather in draft rooms at locations of their choosing.
Building on the success of the 2020 Draft-A-Thon, the 2021 draft will once again serve as a platform to heighten awareness of issues impacting communities adversely affected by the pandemic.
–Field Level Media