NFL Draft Prospects Face Unusual Circumstance This Year

Greg Arias

The Vanderbilt Commodores have three players set to embark on NFL careers in the coming months, but first, they must wait to hear their names called during the upcoming NFL Draft that will be unlike anything we've ever seen, or that the league, its teams, their executives, coaches and everyone else have ever witnessed. 

Originally scheduled to take place in Las Vegas, this year's draft will now be conducted with commissioner Roger Goodell along with general managers and other team officials in their individual homes, meaning this will be the most technological draft ever. 

While it might seem difficult for folks who don't use technology regularly, or who have never been part of video conference calls, this thing will be challenging but shouldn't prove overly difficult, as long as everyone's internet connections are good of course.  

While I'm not privy to the exact system that will be used, I can guess it will be something along the platform of a Zoom video/conference call. 

We here at Sports Illustrated use the Zoom platform weekly for our conference call that includes 75-100 people, mostly from their homes around the country. It's simply a matter of someone setting up the meeting and sending a link to all participants. 

Each week at the set time, we simply click on the link and enter the meeting, muting our microphones and cameras on our computers where only the person leading the meeting can then be seen and heard. When the time comes for questions, there is a chat box where you can type questions or simply unmute your microphone and speak to the entire room.     

That's basically what the NFL will do, though they have the financial means to do something more elaborate here, and likely will for television purposes. 

Still for the individual teams to be able to communicate between various team officials, this will be the system. 

What does it mean for players such as Ke'Shawn Vaughn, Jared Pinkney, and Kalijah Lipscomb?

Not much really as the middle to later rounds of the draft, where all three are now being projected will be a waiting game and depending on how the television coverage goes, it might be somewhat delayed in reaching the nation, but drafted players are always called by the team selecting them before the announcements are usually made on television anyway. 

Regardless of the system used, this NFL Draft will be historic, just as last years draft here in Nashville set records for attendance, this one will set a record for the lack of attendance and the number of sites used to pull it off. 

I can hardly wait. Hey, it's a live sporting event, and right now those are nonexistent.  

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