NEW ORLEANS, La. (KPLC) - The coronavirus pandemic has changed the sports landscape for the foreseeable future. While the NFL has been safe from postponing any of its events, the 2020 NFL Draft could be the first if some General Managers have their way.
Speaking on The Peter King Podcast Wednesday, Saints GM Mickey Loomis said that he feels the league should hold the NFL Draft at a later date. It’s currently set for April 23-25.
“I’d be personally in favor of delaying the draft so that we could get some of the work done that our scouts and personnel people ordinarily do,” Loomis told King. “And then just the logistics of trying to conduct the draft with not having access to your draft rooms and your offices creates a lot of logistic problems. This is not a fantasy draft that you conduct out there with just a list of things on a piece of paper. There’s a lot of things that go into it to prepare, and there’s a lot of work that is done during the draft. Listen it’ll be very, very difficult to conduct that and do it in a way that you’re doing justice to the process.”
He’s one of numerous GM’s that are in favor of delaying the draft according to a report by ESPN late Tuesday night. According to ESPN, the NFL’s general manager subcommittee made a recommendation to Roger Goodell that the draft should be moved back due to the coronavirus, although the report also outlined that the NFL is standing firm on the original date.
The league’s GMs like Loomis are concerned with some teams having to work from home due to state advisories, offseason activity cancellations and the lack of physical contact with prospects.
“A large part of the information process hasn’t happened yet,” said Loomis. “And a lot of that gets done in the months of March and early part of April. And obviously we haven’t been able to do that. It doesn’t make it impossible, and yet it makes it much more of a gamble, much riskier than it would be ordinarily.”
The NFL Draft is always a game of chance for teams and this year will be no different (if not more so) whether the draft is held in April or at a later date.