Green Bay passed over for 2024 NFL draft, but Packers, city say quest isn't over
GREEN BAY – Green Bay's quest to host an NFL draft continues.
The league announced Monday that Detroit would host the 2024 draft. Las Vegas is the 2022 host, followed by Kansas City in 2023. The 2022 draft is April 28-30.
“The Packers and the event’s community supporters remain optimistic that Green Bay will have the opportunity to host the NFL Draft in the near future,” said Packers President and CEO Mark Murphy. “We will continue to work with Discover Green Bay and our other partners in the effort to update our bid details and continue our dialogue with NFL officials so they remain excited about our community’s plan to host this significant event."
The decision is a disappointment, but not the end of the effort, local organizers said.
"It’s not a yes or no answer. It’s a when. We are not giving up, regardless," said Brad Toll, president and CEO of tourism bureau Discover Green Bay.
The draft could bring hundreds of thousands of visitors to the Green Bay area over the three days of the event, not counting television crews, NFL staffers and others needed for its production, who would be here for up to six weeks.
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Toll estimated the draft would have, at minimum, a $90 million economic impact on Wisconsin, much of that centered on Brown County. The PGA estimated the Ryder Cup, held near Sheboygan in September 2021, was worth $130 million, and the draft could be bigger.
Philadelphia reported 250,000 attendees in 2017, Nashville claimed 600,000 in 2019 and Cleveland 160,000 in 2021. Cleveland's smaller turnout was attributed to COVID-19 pandemic safety measures. The draft was held virtually in 2020 because of the pandemic.
Green Bay would rely heavily on the Resch Center/Resch Expo complex, Lambeau Field and the Titletown District to house the event, a configuration that would be similar to that used by Cleveland in April 2021.
As the smallest market in the NFL, Green Bay has to rely on its unique attributes to attract the league, chief among them its history as one of the oldest franchises and the one with the most NFL championships at 13, Murphy said.
Loosely speaking, the draft is considered compensation for teams that never will host a Super Bowl. That's not a hard-and-fast rule. Consider Las Vegas, for example, which will host Super Bowl LVIII in 2024, and Detroit, which hosted Super Bowl XL in 2006.
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