Report: 2019 NFL Draft 'Expected' to Be Hosted by Nashville

Timothy Rapp@@TRappaRTFeatured ColumnistMay 21, 2018

Commissioner Roger Goodell presents Alabama's Rashaan Evans with his Tennessee Titans team jersey during the first round of the NFL football draft, Thursday, April 26, 2018, in Arlington, Texas. (AP Photo/David J. Phillip)
David J. Phillip/Associated Press

NFL owners are expected to name Nashville, Tennessee, the host city of the 2019 NFL draft during this week's meetings in Atlanta, according to Adam Schefter of ESPN.com.

After being hosted in New York City from 1965 through 2014, the NFL has shifted gears. The event took place in Chicago in 2015 and 2016, Philadelphia in 2017 and Dallas in 2018.

In February, the NFL announced five finalists to host either the 2019 or 2020 draft: Nashville, Denver, Cleveland/Canton, Kansas City and Las Vegas.

Butch Spyridon, president and CEO of the Nashville Convention & Visitors Corp., told Cameron Wolfe of ESPN.com that Nashville has recommended the league use the Ascend Amphitheater as its draft theater. He suggested the Titans' home, Nissan Stadium, and its parking lot area by the Shelby Bridge for the fan experience and the Schermerhorn Symphony Center for the team war room/team desk.

"We're the perfect location for the draft," Spyridon said. "The brand, the destination, the convenience of our downtown and location of the stadium, the star power that can help promote it and be part of the entertainment."

Per that report, the league isn't looking for a "buttoned-up draft." The NFL wants its prospective host cities to "reinvent the wheel" in its plans for the draft and to put together an event that takes on the "personality of its host city."

"At one point, the NFL folks said music never really worked very well with our audience. I looked at them and said, 'You've never done it in Nashville,'" Spyridon said. "We're not going to do it without music. We're going to do it big. We could do it in a real fun, cool way."

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