The NFL Draft will move to prime time in 2010 as ESPN will televise the first round beginning at 7:30 pm Eastern on Thursday, April 22nd, 2010 from Radio City Music Hall in New York City.
The league is hoping the first round will be completed by 11 pm Eastern time. Football betting info tells us that the second and third rounds will be held on Friday beginning at 6:30 pm Eastern. The last four rounds will be on Saturday beginning at 10 am. “We continue to look for ways to make the draft more accessible to more fans,” NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell said, “Moving the first round to prime time on Thursday night will make the first round of the draft available to fans on what is typically the most-watched night of television.”
The NFL Draft will be televised by ESPN and the NFL Network. The 2009 NFL Draft was watched by a reported 39 million viewers on ESPN, ESPN 2 and the NFL Network as football betting numbers indicated. Last year the first round drew a combined average of 6.3 million viewers as football odds numbers indicate. That is more than any of the basketball; hockey or baseball games drew for that weekend.
Just over a decade ago the NFL Draft was not that heavily followed but ESPN has changed that. From 1988-1994 the draft was held on Sunday-Mondays while from 1995 to 2009 the draft was turned into a Saturday-Sunday event. Now it will be a three-day event that will get a lot of attention. Online sports betting stats tell us that the first round of the 2009 NFL Draft lasted about 3.5 hours so the league is planning for a similar amount of time in 2010 on Thursday.
The NFL Draft gets a lot of attention in football betting. Gamblers from around the world get a chance to predict which player will be taken first in addition to other football betting propositions. The entire event has become popular and taken on a life of its own with sports betting gamblers. Football odds on the NFL Draft actually get attention from people who just can’t get enough of the NFL. Each spring the NFL takes the attention away from baseball, basketball and hockey with the NFL Draft. With the draft moving to three days, that should be case again in 2010.