NFL draft news: The annual Shrine Bowl will be in Las Vegas in 2022

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The 2022 NFL draft will take place in Las Vegas, and now the traditional kickoff event to draft season is joining the festivities in Nevada.

The Shrine Bowl is moving to Las Vegas for 2022, uprooting from its longtime home in St. Petersburg. The Bowl announced the move in a press release on Tuesday.

For years the Shrine Bowl has served as the unofficial kickoff of draft season. Nearly every GM and all college scouts descend upon St. Pete during mid-January to evaluate over 90 players whose college eligibility is spent. The practice sessions and easy access to interview players are tremendous tools for NFL teams, as well as the draft media.

The will now be played on Thursday, February 3rd and broadcast on NFL Network. It is the same week as the Senior Bowl in Mobile, which will be played on Saturday, February 5th.

Most of the Shrine Bowl players wind up being drafted on Day 3 or enter the NFL as priority free agents. In recent years the Browns have plucked Sione Takitaki, D’Ernest Johnson, Sheldrick Redwine, Chad Thomas, Nate Orchard and Pierre Desir (among others) as Shrine Bowl alums in the draft.