The wait may finally come to an end in a few years.
The long wait for Green Bay to host the NFL Draft may finally be coming to an end soon. Although the city was among the finalists for hosting the 2024 NFL Draft, the NFL awarded that event to Detroit instead when making its decision at the annual league meeting in March.
That certainly hasn’t stopped Green Bay and the Packers from continuing to push for the event to come to Lambeau Field and the surrounding area, however, and team president Mark Murphy offered an optimistic look at the potential for that to come sooner rather than later. While speaking at the Packers’ annual Shareholders Meeting on Monday, Murphy revealed that the draft should be coming in one of the next few cycles:
Mark Murphy said he still thinks Green Bay will host an NFL Draft.
This slide says Green Bay will ‘likely’ host it in 2025 or 2027. pic.twitter.com/0lL9wLKLsV
— Rob Demovsky (@RobDemovsky) July 25, 2022
As mentioned above, Detroit is scheduled to host the event in 2024, with Kansas City already selected to be the host city for next year, 2023. The Packers getting the 2025 NFL Draft would keep the event in the Midwest for three straight years, a first for any one region since the league started moving the event around in 2015.
Interestingly, since 2019, the host cities in odd years have tended to be in locations thought of as smaller markets. The host cities dating back to 2018 are as follows:
- 2018: Dallas
- 2019: Nashville
- 2020: Las Vegas (canceled due to COVID-19 pandemic)
- 2021: Cleveland
- 2022: Las Vegas
- 2023: Kansas City
- 2024: Detroit
Of course, Green Bay is by far the smallest media market in any major North American professional sport, with the Green Bay-Appleton market ranking 69th (nice) according to data gathered by Wikipedia. For comparison, Kansas City ranks 34th and Nashville is 29th.
One major competitor for the draft is Washington, D.C., which was the third finalist city for the 2024 Draft. Other markets with NFL teams are sure to bid as well, putting the timeline for Lambeau to be a primary draft site in doubt.
One thing is certain, however: the Packers and the city of Green Bay continue to push hard to bring the NFL Draft to town. And if Murphy indeed has his finger on the pulse of the selection process rather than just speaking optimistically, it should take place in the next half-decade.