The NFL has announced that the 2020 NFL Draft will be held April 23-25 without public participation. The event had been scheduled to be held in Las Vegas.
The league did not reveal how the selection process will be conducted, with their statement saying only that “innovative options” are being considered. The draft will still be televised. Commissioner Roger Goodell called the outcome “disappointing both to the NFL and to the Las Vegas community.” Goodell added that the league will look for opportunities to place other major events in Las Vegas at some point in the future.
The full statement from the NFL is below.
In consideration of current information related to COVID-19 and guidance from medical experts such as the CDC, and in coordination with public authorities in Nevada and the City of Las Vegas, the NFL will modify its plans for the 2020 NFL Draft, NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell announced today.
The clubs’ selection of players will proceed as scheduled April 23-25. The NFL is exploring innovative options for how the process will be conducted and will provide that information as it becomes available. The selection process will be televised.
Public NFL Draft events in Las Vegas next month will not take place.
”This decision reflects our foremost priority – the health and safety of all fans and citizens,” said Commissioner Goodell. “While this outcome is disappointing both to the NFL and to the Las Vegas community, we look forward to partnering with the Raiders, the City of Las Vegas and the Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority for a future NFL Draft as well as evaluating opportunities for other major NFL events in Las Vegas in the future, including the Super Bowl.”
Due to the COVID-19 outbreak, the CDC has recommended no gatherings of 250 or more people be held for the next eight weeks. All other major sports leagues have suspended operations.
There had been some discussion of whether or not the NFL would push back the beginning of free agency. That, obviously, is not the case.