NFL To Set Up Safeguards During Virtual Draft

Todd Karpovich

The NFL has installed safeguards to ensure that technical issues don’t happen with the virtual 2020 draft. 

League sources say there will be multiple tests of the system prior to the draft, which begins April 23.

One safeguard will be a conference call with all 32 teams that will be in progress throughout the draft. If a general manager is hooked up to that call via landline and his internet connection cuts out, he would be able to unmute the call and announce his pick in a forum in which every other team could hear it. 

Email is another option teams will have for sending in picks if there are online connection issues.

Ravens coach John Harbaugh said his team is taking extra precaution to make sure their proprietary information is not compromised. In fact, it's been an ongoing conversation with the team's technology team. 

Yes, it’s a big concern. My level of involvement has been every time I read something in The Wall Street Journal or New York Times that talks about how messed up Zoom is or some of these other deals that came out this morning, I immediately text it to our IT people," Harbaugh said. "[Director of football administration] Nick Matteo is one of those guys, and they assure me that we are doing everything humanly possible, and I remind them that that’s what Wells Fargo and all those other places said about our private information.

"I’ve got some real concerns about that, and hopefully we’ll be okay. It’s kind of like that. We’ll see what happens. I really wouldn’t want the opposing coaches to have our playbook or our draft meetings. That would be preferable, if we can stay away from that.”