The NFL confirmed this morning through a press release that the 2014 NFL Draft will take place on May 8th through May 10th at Radio City Music Hall, which is two weeks later than the league normally holds the yearly event. The move was made, allegedly, because of scheduling difficulties at the RCMH, but more than likely it's a business decision for the league.
The NFL clubs also were informed that there would be no significant changes in the dates of other off-season events next year:
- Several Regional Combines will be held on various dates from January 24 through February 16, 2014. Some Regional Combines may be held after the National Combine in Indianapolis.
- The National Combine in Indianapolis will be held from February 18-25, 2014.
- The new League Year, and the Free Agency period, will begin on March 11, 2014.
- The Annual Meeting will be held in Orlando, Florida, on March 23-26, 2014.
The move to May isn't necessarily a permanent change - but if the NFL finds it works better for sponsorship dollars and other revenue-increasing avenues, it could very well remain this way for good.
The move, from what I've seen, hasn't been greeted warmly by coaching staffs around the league, but the NFL was quick to point out that this move won't limit the amount of days that teams have to work with their rookies.
The change in the date of the 2014 Draft will have no effect on when rookies may begin to report to their clubs, the dates of off-season programs, or the length of off-season programs. Clubs will have available to them the same number of practice days that they currently have and no changes in the off-season calendar are being considered that would reduce the number of practice days or the overall length of the off-season program. At this time, changes are not anticipated in the off-season calendar for 2015 and beyond that would reduce the number of practice days or otherwise limit the off-season program.
Read More from Field Gulls: