Maybe we can still have this great time. Maybe the only difference is that Joe Burrow is replaced by Sam Howell.
Maybe it’ll be a quarterback from North Carolina instead of one from the State of Louisiana who disembarks from a boat on the red carpet in the NFL Draft, then sprints a few yards forward and jumps straight in the fountains of the Bellagio.
So be it. Let football fans all over the world enjoy such a spectacle.
What would become a reality in 2020 is now set for 2022. The project is on its way to Las Vegas after being struck out here last year due to COVID-19.
It’s better that way. You cannot properly describe how incomprehensible the pandemic has turned out to so many. That a break has been brought to the world of sport is not nearly the most significant event of the past year. Not in the same stratosphere.
But the mere idea that a severely toned down version of the project – with no fans, no less – was staged in Las Vegas last year is laughable. Ultimately, the league had no choice. It was to virtually contain last year’s draft.
Good for Las Vegas. We don’t do things by halves.
You say i say
Drafts are as much about the vibe as they are the selected players, and Las Vegas has yet another chance to outperform even the most energetic of these recent events.
You say Draft Town in Grant Park and Congress Plaza in Chicago. I’m saying the potential of a Bellagio cannonball.
You say the Rocky Steps in Philadelphia. I say an experiment project near the Caesars Forum and the Linq.
You say the guy dressed as Jesus and sat in a tree praying for a drunk and passed out Eagles fan below him. I say an Elvis sitting on the shoulders of another Elvis and praying for the drunk and passed out Elvis below him.
You say Lower Broadway in Nashville. I say the Strip.
You tell a TV photo of Bill Belichick’s weird dog sitting at a dining table, ready to make New England’s next pick. I sayâ¦ OK, so we can’t get past that.
But if things are moving in a positive direction with COVID-19 as more people are vaccinated, if the NFL deems it safe to welcome traditional-sized crowds again for a draft, we don’t. can’t say how much of an event this could be next year. .
Even with protocols in place, this could be historic on countless levels.
You could be talking about hundreds of thousands of fans from all 32 teams, dressed in their favorite jerseys, partying and drinking in three days.
In other words, what we call Tuesday afternoon.
One potential downside: It may have been two years before Commissioner Roger Goodell was first booed here, but hosting the project is still likely to be a logistical nightmare.
There will be transportation issues as safe as Marc-AndrÃ© Fleury sweaters seen inside the T-Mobile Arena on game night.
The good news is, we seem to be handling this chaos well. Hello, every New Years Eve.
There just isn’t much downside to hosting the draft. Want the perfect dress rehearsal to land a Super Bowl? That’s it – which is why the NFL should find a way to incorporate Allegiant Stadium into its draft plans for 2022.
âIt’s going to be exciting,â said Raiders owner Mark Davis. âBut, again, it’s one of those perks of bringing the Raiders and the NFL to Las Vegas. These are things that a lot of people don’t understand. We weren’t just bringing a football team. We were bringing an army.
âI’m very excited about this. I saw the plans last time, and it would have been an outrageous weekend. This city knows how to organize an event. There is no such thing. “
Fasten your seat belts, Las Vegas. Here is the NFL draft.
I hope someone will give Sam Howell a towel to dry off.
Ed Graney is the recipient of the Sigma Delta Chi Award for Sports Writing and can be reached at [email protected] or 702-383-4618. It can be heard on “The Press Box,” ESPN Radio 100.9 FM and 1100 AM, 7 am to 10 am, Monday through Friday. To pursue @edgraney on Twitter.