NFL commissioner Roger Goodell circulated a memo Monday to inform teams that they will have to conduct the upcoming draft from home, according to multiple reports.
While there was some thought that a few team members would be able to gather at one home, that will not happen — as all club personnel must be separate.
“We have made this decision for several reasons,” Goodell wrote in the memo. “All clubs will not have access to their facilities, which is contrary to the fundamental equity principle that all clubs operate in a consistent and fair way. Moreover, we want all NFL personnel to comply with government directives and to model safe and appropriate health practices.”
The coronavirus pandemic already has closed all team facilities, with many franchises in states or municipalities under “stay at home” directives. Team personnel, like general managers and scouts, have already been conducting internal meetings and meetings with prospective picks virtually in the pre-draft process.
The NFL Draft was scheduled to take place in Las Vegas from April 23-25, but the pandemic caused the NFL to cancel all public events on March 16. The event is still slated for those dates.
The league has not yet announced its plans to televise the draft, but NBC Sports’ Peter King reported Monday that ESPN and the NFL Network could host a joint broadcast originating from ESPN’s studios in Connecticut that also would incorporate a telethon fundraising element.