Roger Goodell informed teams on Monday in a memo (which can be read here) that the NFL Draft would happen in a fully virtual format. In doing this, it raises a ton of questions about teams cheating using technology as well as what were to happen should the internet go down.
The draft is happening on April 23rd and the league is going to conduct at least one mock draft to ensure everything runs smoothly.
The league also is expected to have one that will be a dress rehearsal of sorts as the teams prepare for the virtual draft.
The mock draft, Pelissero said, would come in addition to multiple system checks with many teams expected to have their general manager's houses as the hub of their respective drafts.
The checks are designed to make sure "everyone is up to speed," before the draft, Pelissero said.
Should a genuine technical difficulty occur during the draft, the league will make for allowances.
Per a league source, the NFL will be prepared to show flexibility in the event that a genuine technical breakdown happens. In late April, for example, thunderstorms tend to happen on a fairly regular basis. Chances are that, somewhere in the U.S., a storm will be firing at some point during the first round of the draft. If a G.M. or head coach or owner temporarily lose all connections due to a lightning strike, the NFL won’t tell them, “Sh-t happens.”
Whatever form it takes, it must be a real breakdown, not an inconvenience or an annoyance or an actual or feigned inability to figure out how to use the available technology. The league is working with all relevant sponsors (like Verizon, Amazon, and Bose) to ensure that, despite everyone taking the office to the home, a legitimate workplace will emerge.
Only time will tell whether this idea was a smart one on the part of Roger Goodell but I think it's safe to say we all are still excited that the draft if happening.
Technology is like the three-point shot, you live by it and you die by it.