2020 NFL Draft Programming Details Announced
As Hank Williams Jr famously says…”Are you ready for some football?”. I know most of America will give a resounding YES to that! Good news, on April 23-25 ABC, ESPN and the NFL Network are all presenting the 2020 NFL Draft. This is the second straight year that the National Football League and The Walt Disney Company has announced the multi-network presentation for all seven rounds.
ABC is airing its own distinctive, prime-time airing of Rounds 1-3. ESPN and NFL Network are combining to simulcast these first 3 Rounds. For Rounds 4-7 all three networks are offering a singular presentation. On THURSDAY, APRIL 23 (8:00-11:30 p.m. EDT) and then on FRIDAY, APRIL 24 (7:00-11:30 p.m. EDT), the “2020 NFL Draft on ABC” is scheduled to air live coast to coast on ABC.
During the 2020 NFL Draft, a 3-day virtual fundraiser is being held in order to benefit 6 charities that are battling the spread of COVID-19 and delivering relief to millions in need. The hope is that this NFL Draft will offer fans a small but welcome diversion in the middle of a difficult and unprecedented time.
The 2020 NFL Draft was originally scheduled to be held in Las Vegas, Nevada. The new venue is now ESPN’s studios in Bristol, Connecticut. The presentation is to adhere to proper social distancing guidelines and local workplace rules due to COVID-19. Only the draft hosts and a limited number of commentators are allowed in the studio. The majority of the analysts, reporters and other experts are remotely contributing from their home studios. Roger Goodell, the NFL Commissioner, is introducing the picks from his home.
As mentioned above, a “Draft-A-Thon” is also being featured. This virtual fundraiser is paying tribute to healthcare workers and first responders in a variety of ways. This includes raising funds for the work being done to combat the impact of COVID-19. The funds raised are to help support six national nonprofits and their respective COVID-19 relief efforts.
“We recognize the challenging times we are living in, but we are looking forward to presenting the 2020 NFL Draft and providing some hope for football fans everywhere,” said Seth Markman, ESPN vice president, Production. “For the past couple of years, ESPN’s NFL and college teams have worked together on our draft coverage, and it has been a win for our viewers. This year, we are further excited to collaborate with the NFL Network creating an All-Star broadcast. We are also committed to producing the ESPN/NFL Network and ABC shows in the safest possible environment for our announcers and production teams.”
“We are excited to partner with ESPN to present a unique and collaborative broadcast of the 2020 NFL Draft,” said Mark Quenzel, senior vice president of Programming and Production, NFL Network. “By bringing the exceptional on-air talent and production staffs of both ESPN and the NFL Network together, we hope to deliver a unified presentation of the draft that not only helps raise awareness and funds for the COVID-19 relief efforts but also provides entertainment that millions of sports fans have been craving.”
NFL Draft Schedule (April 23-25):
- Thursday, April 23 (8:00-11:30 p.m. EDT): NFL Draft, Round 1 – ABC, ESPN, NFL Network, ESPN Deportes, ESPN Radio
- Friday, April 24 (7:00-11:30 p.m.): NFL Draft, Rounds 2 and 3 – ABC, ESPN, NFL Network, ESPN Deportes, ESPN Radio
- Saturday, April 25 (12:00-7:00 p.m.): NFL Draft, Rounds 4–7 – ABC, ESPN, NFL Network, ESPN Deportes, ESPN Radio
ABC’s unique prime-time telecasts of the NFL Draft, April 23 and 24, will include:
- Host: Rece Davis
- Host: Jesse Palmer
- Host: Maria Taylor
- NFL Draft Analyst: Todd McShay (12th draft, first commentating on all seven rounds)
- College Football Analyst: Kirk Herbstreit (third)
- College Football Analyst: Desmond Howard (third)
- College Football Analyst: David Pollack (third)
- Correspondent/Feature Reporter: Tom Rinaldi.
ABC is focusing on the journey of the NFL Draft prospects. Viewers get to go up close and personal to understand the part their families play in their success and the hard work involved in attempting to become an NFL Draft selection. Davis, Palmer, Taylor and Rinaldi will be in studio in Bristol.
On Saturday, April 25, Todd McShay and Trey Wingo are joining the ESPN/NFL Network crew for Rounds 4-7.
All three days ESPN’s NFL Draft coverage is featuring Trey Wingo as host for the fourth consecutive year, based in Bristol. Wingo is also being joined remotely by:
- ESPN analysts Mel Kiper Jr. (37th draft)
- Louis Riddick (sixth)
- Booger McFarland (third)
- NFL Network host Rich Eisen (17th)
- Draft analyst Daniel Jeremiah (eighth)
- Pro Football Hall of Famer Michael Irvin (ninth)
- Pro Football Hall of Famer Kurt Warner (10th)
ESPN NFL host Suzy Kolber is conducting remote interviews with NFL draftees from an ESPN studio, and ESPN Senior NFL Insiders Chris Mortensen and Adam Schefter will again be part of the three-day telecast, providing updates from their respective homes.
ESPN reporters are covering the NFL Draft remotely for ABC, ESPN and NFL Network. Assignments include the following:
- Josina Anderson (covering Vikings, Redskins, Browns, 49ers)
- Jeff Darlington (Dolphins, Jaguars, Buccaneers, Chiefs)
- Dan Graziano (Packers, Lions, Chargers, Panthers, Raiders)
- Sal Paolantonio (Giants, Ravens, Eagles, Jets)
- Mike Reiss (Patriots)
- Dianna Russini (Titans, Bengals, Saints, Falcons)
- Ed Werder (Broncos, Seahawks, Cowboys, Cardinals)
The 2020 NFL Draft is also being streamed live via a number of NFL and ESPN digital properties across devices (Phone, PC, tablet and connected TVs). NFL Network or ESPN authentication may be required.
NFL Digital Platforms
- NFL App
ESPN Digital Platforms
- ESPN App
ESPN Deportes is also providing exclusive Spanish-language coverage of the 2020 NFL Draft. Commentators include “Monday Night Football” voices Eduardo Varela and Pablo Viruega. In addition, ESPNDeportes.com has a team dedicated to covering the draft, providing pre-draft analysis, pieces written by Sebastian Martinez Christensen and videos of every selection.
Live radio coverage is being provided by SiriusXM (Rounds 1-7), Westwood One (Round 1) and ESPN Radio (Rounds 1-7). ESPN Radio commentators include host Dari Nowkhah, NFL Front Office Insider Mike Tannenbaum, ESPN New York’s Bart Scott (Thursday/Friday), NFL Draft analyst Jim Nagy (Saturday) and reporter Ian Fitzsimmons with updates from Marc Kestecher.
Digital audio of NFL Network’s coverage of the 2020 NFL Draft is being provided via the TuneIn app.
Source Credit: ABC
Top Image Credit: ESPN Press Room
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