Pants optional: 2020 NFL Draft takes place over Zoom

Due to the times, this year’s draft will be completely virtual while also include a fundraising element 

By Patrick Babbitt

 

Now, this is going to be interesting. 

The NFL will remotely conduct the 2020 NFL Draft starting this Thursday, April 23 into Saturday, April 25. The event will ultimately see 255 players distributed among the NFL’s 32 teams. 

The draft, referred to as the ‘Draft-A-Thon,’ will also serve as a virtual fundraiser for organizations battling the spread of COVID-19 and delivering relief to millions in need. The NFL Foundation as selected six charities which it will support.

The league decided to carry on with the draft given that an official end date to social distancing is not on the horizon and fans are eager for content and some normalcy with the sports they love. 

Naturally, there are concerns about security. 

“These teams are used to having great communication. Now you can do it through teleconferencing, but there are already teams worried about having their Zoom teleconference hacked in by another team. That’s been a question that’s been raised right now,” ESPN’s Adam Schefter said during the Tuesday episode of “Get Up.”

Alongside security, there are additional concerns given that staff cannot conduct their medical rechecks or in-person visits.

Even if there are a few fumbles, at the end of the day though, we’re just excited to have football back. It’s amazing to see the league remain fluid during these uncertain times and use their resources and technology to carry on business as usual.

Here is the full schedule, with all three days on ABC, ESPN, NFL Network, ESPN Deportes, and ESPN Radio:
Round 1: Thurs., April 23, from 8-11:30 p.m. ET
Rounds 2-3: Fri., April 24, 7-11:30 p.m. ET
Rounds 4-7: Sat., April 25, from noon-7 p.m. ET 

Charities Supported During the 2020 NFL Draft-A-Thon
American Red Cross
CDC Foundation’s All of Us: Combat Coronavirus Campaign
Feeding America’s COVID-19 Response Fund
Meals on Wheels COVID-19 Response Fund
Salvation Army
United Way’s COVID-19 Community Response and Recovery Fund