No surprise as anonymous NFL personnel whine about technical glitches during NFL's virtual mock draft

Frank Schwab
·3 min read

The NFL makes more than $10 billion a year. Yet the reaction of some teams to the virtual draft — and the coverage of it — makes it seem like the league using simple technology to draft is akin to trying to land a man on the moon in 1969.

Some around the NFL continue to be utterly tone-deaf to their complaints about drafting online as the entire world deals with a global health crisis. It took all of one pick into the NFL’s mock draft, held to work out some glitches, for someone to complain to ESPN’s Adam Schefter there was a technical glitch.

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The leak probably meant to point out that the NFL’s infrastructure had a problem on the first pick. What it really did is show that some living in the NFL front office bubble couldn’t wait past one pick to whine to a reporter about how tough they have it, drafting virtually.

On behalf of everyone dealing with real problems during the coronavirus pandemic: Please quit complaining about drafting on your computer.

WNBA pulled off a virtual draft just fine

Seriously, this isn’t difficult. If you can jump on Zoom with your friends for a virtual happy hour, the most powerful sports league in North America should be able to communicate draft picks.

The WNBA did a virtual draft without a glitch. Maybe it’s because their league didn’t spend endless time complaining to national reporters about how hard it would be.

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Picks will be made, that’s a guarantee. NFL teams’ cell phones still work during the coronavirus pandemic.

NFL commissioner Roger Goodell will preside over a virtual draft. (Photo by Focus on Sport/Getty Images)
NFL commissioner Roger Goodell will preside over a virtual draft. (Photo by Focus on Sport/Getty Images)

The whining from NFL personnel is insufferable

The idea that this draft is worlds different than anything the NFL has done before is weird. The NFL has managed to select players using telephone technology for decades. The WNBA pulled off a virtual draft just fine. And to complain about it incessantly and anonymously is insulting to the rest of us who are dealing with our own issues, most of which are much more serious than a social meeting app freezing up.

This is a league in which “next man up” has become a well-worn cliche. Yet when it comes to using simple technology to tell Roger Goodell which college player they would like to draft, they’re whining like a 3-year-old at bedtime. And oh, who would have thought that during a mock draft to work out the wrinkles, the wrinkles were worked out pretty quick. Good thing some folks were able to fire off angry texts to reporters when the first pick had minor difficulties.

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There will be issues. They should be able to figure them out and still select college prospects. And there will be insufferable whining. And nobody will want to hear about it. Just draft, already.

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