The NFL is missing opportunities with their draft hosting sites

ARLINGTON, TX - APRIL 26: The 2018 NFL Draft logo is seen on a video board during the first round of the 2018 NFL Draft at AT
ARLINGTON, TX - APRIL 26: The 2018 NFL Draft logo is seen on a video board during the first round of the 2018 NFL Draft at AT /

The NFL Draft has been held in New York City, Philadelphia, Chicago, and this year in Dallas but the NFL is missing a big opportunity.

When it comes to the NFL Draft, very few professional sports can compete with the draw the NFL brings in with the annual event. The draft has become so popular that this year FOX telecast the draft using NFL Network’s broadcast. There are rumors that all three big networks could telecast the draft in the future.

It’s unclear where the NFL Draft will take place in 2019. There are some reports that Nashville is the leading site and the city would be a great place to host such a big event. But here is where the NFL is missing an opportunity. Why do they have the draft hosted in an NFL city?

There are 32 teams in the NFL and of those 32, several cities host more than one team. In other words, there is only 30 actual NFL cities and if you count San Francisco and Oakland as one that reduces it even more. So why not move the draft to non-NFL cities?

The NFL wants to expand its reach and by taking the draft on the road to where NFL games are not played, they are reaching a larger audience who may not get the chance to have more intimate experiences with the league.

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Canton, Ohio is the host to the HOF game and the HOF weekend annually. That will not change. Nor should it. Indianapolis hosts the annual NFL Combine and should not be included in a draft hosting party. In Florida, Orlando has hosted the Pro-Bowl and even pre-season games and the draw has been fantastic from an attendance standpoint.

For the NFL it’s a matter of market size. Eventually the league will venture to the West Coast but for now it has stayed more towards the East.

If the NFL wanted to grow why not have the event in Austin, Tx one year or San Antonio? Why not host the draft in Columbus, Oh, St. Louis, Omaha, Oklahoma City, and so on. The NFL Draft will draw big numbers wherever they go and the influx of people could help a lot of those cities should the NFL come to town. It doesn’t have to stay top major market to be a success and frankly it might add more attendance in some of the out of NFL markets.

Reaching new fans and adding new fans is important to the league so they shouldn’t allow themselves to be pigeonholed into an NFL city. Branch out and explore. Try it once and see how it goes. It won’t hurt anything.