NFL Network Will Provide over 45 Hours of Live Coverage During Draft

Tyler Conway@jtylerconwayFeatured ColumnistMarch 28, 2013

Apr 28, 2011; New York, NY, USA; NFL Network analyst Steve Mariucci (L) analyst Michael Irvin (C) and analyst Mike Mayock  (R) during the 2011 NFL Draft at Radio City Music Hall. Mandatory Credit: Howard Smith-USA TODAY Sports
Howard Smith-USA TODAY Sports

Just when you thought coverage of the NFL draft could not get more extensive, the league's television network is taking it to a whole new level. 

Speaking with Michael Hiestand of USA Today, NFL Network coordinating producer Charlie Yook unveiled a plan for 45-plus hours of live programming during the 2013 draft, which will be held April 25-27.

That might seem excessive on the surface, but Yook is going out of his way to fill those hours with top-notch analyses from a vast array of sources. NFL Network will have four major college head coaches—LSU's Les Miles, Texas A&M's Kevin Sumlin, Notre Dame's Brian Kelly and Stanford's David Shaw—as guest analysts to go along with their usual lineup of pundits, including draft expert Mike Mayock.

Yook and the network seem to be fully focused on expanding the league's all-draft, all-the-time initiative for late April. The NFL moved the first round to Thursdays in 2010 to reap the rewards of primetime television money, and the league's network has benefited by drawing record ratings during the festivities.

With the NFL Network mostly in a dark period following the season, increasing the draft coverage makes sense. The other programming is sparse, and increasing draft coverage and ratings as a result will only lead to more money from cable and satellite providers in the long-term. 

While it's unknown what other initiatives the NFL Network will undertake with this coverage, Yook made it very clear that 45 hours of live programming was just the beginning.

"I'd love to put cameras everywhere," said Yook (per USA Today). "On hats, toes, maybe use holograms...Maybe next year."

Yook obviously made that statement in jest—only Tupac gets holograms. But with the NFL Network pushing forth with increased coverage on a yearly basis, nothing is outside the realm of possibilities anymore.