CLEVELAND, Ohio (WKBN) – The city of Cleveland will host the 2021 NFL Draft.
NFL commissioner Roger Goodell made the announcement Wednesday.
“Cleveland has a passionate fan base and the city offers distinctive iconic locations and attractions that will bring the NFL Draft experience to fans in unique and exciting ways,” he said. “We look forward to collaborating with the Cleveland Browns, the City of Cleveland, Greater Cleveland Sports Commission and Destination Cleveland to celebrate the achievements of the next generation of players and create a memorable fan experience.”
Only nine cities have hosted the NFL draft since it was first established in 1936. Las Vegas will be the 10th, and Cleveland is next in line.
Nashville, Tennessee hosted the NFL Draft this year and reported more than $132 million of economic impact.
The Cleveland Browns, who played their inaugural season in 1946, will also be celebrating their 75th anniversary throughout 2021.
As part of the event, the free NFL Draft Experience – a massive free football festival – will enable fans of all teams to participate and test their football skills, enjoy interactive exhibits and autograph sessions, and take pictures with the Vince Lombardi Trophy. The Draft Experience will be open all three days of the event.
“We are incredibly honored to be able to showcase the City of Cleveland and the passion of Browns fans through the unique international platform the NFL Draft provides,” said Dee and Jimmy Haslam. “This is an exceptional opportunity for Northeast Ohio that even extends beyond football, and we look forward to continuing the work ahead with Greater Cleveland Sports Commission, the City of Cleveland, Destination Cleveland and the NFL to ensure that the 2021 NFL Draft is truly memorable for Northeast Ohio and football fans across the world.”
“The City of Cleveland welcomes the 2021 National Football League Draft,” said Mayor Frank G. Jackson. “We are home to the Cleveland Browns and well-known as a city with passionate sports fans. Visitors will find Cleveland has an unmatched ability to provide Midwestern warmth and hospitality coupled with the amenities found in other major cities. We look forward to hosting the Draft and once again showcasing Cleveland’s ability to organize successful, world-class events.”
The NFL Draft has become one of the biggest and most anticipated sporting events of the year. The 2019 Draft reached new heights and record numbers as the highest-rated and most-watched Draft ever, eclipsing previous records set in 2018.
The 2019 Draft was broadcast over three days and attracted more than 47.5 million total viewers and over 600,000 in attendance. The NFL Draft achieved a combined 3.9 HH rating and an average of 6.1 million viewers across the broadest distribution including NFL Network, ABC, ESPN, ESPN2 and ESPN Deportes, as well as NFL and ESPN digital and social properties.
The 2020 NFL Draft will be held in Las Vegas.