Lions Say ‘The Pick Is In'; NFL Says Detroit Will Host 2024 Draft
The National Football League announced Monday that Detroit has been chosen to host the 2024 NFL Draft. This comes on the heels of news earlier in the day that the Lions will be featured on the HBO series "Hard Knocks".
While the TV series will give the team some added exposure (and maybe change the perception of the franchise a bit), hosting the NFL Draft weekend will actually mean a tangible financial benefit not only to the team but also to the surrounding area. The plan is for the three-day event to be centered around Campus Martius and Hart Plaza in downtown Detroit.
Lions' CEO Rod Wood is quoted in the Detroit News: “We'll be using a lot of the venues in downtown, including the Fox Theatre will be part of it, Hart Plaza will be part of it. Hopefully, we'll have some music events at Ford Field and maybe even Little Caesars (Arena), so it will be throughout the whole city.”
On NFL Network, commentator Ian Rappaport said this is big for Detroit,
"a huge tentpole event in a couple of years. Yeah. Huge thing. And this, I mean, that the city of Detroit and Rod Wood has been fighting for really for several years. They beat out Green Bay, beat out Washington DC. I think it's fair to say they're probably not going to get another Super Bowl. This is the next best thing, a tentpole event and maybe one of the best ways to show off a city and especially a place that probably loves football as much as any other place."
Detroit fans will be hoping that by that time the Lions won't be picking at the top of the draft as they have been for many years now.
One other thing that may not get much attention is the re-emergence of Barry Sanders as a Lions ambassador. In the video above, Sanders is featured. And it points up the change in Lions' leadership and the effort they have made to bring back and include some of the teams' legends is noticeable.