According to a report from ESPN’s Adam Schefter, the NFL is one step closer in determining a host city for the next two NFL drafts. Schefter is reporting that the league is down to five candidates for a host city, and sadly, Detroit is not among them:
Five finalists to host 2019 or 2020 NFL Draft: Cleveland/Canton, Tennessee, Kansas City, Denver, and Las Vegas.— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) February 15, 2018
Winners expected to be announced at May spring meeting.
In the past few years, the league has decided to move the draft from its normal location at Radio City Music Hall in New York City. In 2015 and 2016, Chicago hosted the event, and last year Philadelphia was the host city. In just a couple months, the draft will take place in Arlington, Texas.
Last year, Lions president Rod Wood told reporters he made a plea to the league to consider Detroit as a legitimate host town. “We have some thoughts on what we can do,” Wood told the Detroit Free Press. “I’m not going to get into specifics, but we’ll work on making it as exciting as it was in Philadelphia but with maybe some of the restraints around weather that I can’t really count on 80 degrees like they had.”
One of Wood’s ideas was to use the downtown Fox Theater as the stage for the actual draft, while using the surrounding Ford Field and other buildings for related draft events.
Wood also told the Detroit Free Press back in October that if Detroit was passed over in 2019 and 2020 that he planned on submitting a bid for the years 2021 and beyond.
The last time the Lions held a national NFL event like this was for the 2006 Super Bowl between the Steelers and Seahawks.