The 2020 NFL Draft will be unlike anything seen in recent memory. But EA Sports is going to do its part to add a shade of semi-normalcy.
Due to the global coronavirus pandemic, the annual event, which was slated to be held in Las Vegas, instead will be held remotely. This, of course, means top prospects like Joe Burrow, Chase Young, Justin Herbert and Tua Tagovailoa won't be able to have their handshake moment with NFL commissioner Roger Goodell.
Not so fast.
NFL Media's Ian Rapoport noted Friday that EA Sports will create a digital meeting between each first-round pick and Goodell that will be shown as part of the broadcast.
As the NFL works on a virtual draft experience for prospects, 2 interesting notes:— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) April 3, 2020
— EA Sports will create a virtual moment of the prospect walking out on stage meeting the Commissioner.
— Each prospect will choose a HS to receive a $2,500 grant towards their football program.
EA Sports has reached out to those assumed to be picked in the first round and asked how they would interact with Goodell if the draft were being held in person. There have been several memorable draft moments between prospects and Goodell, including Miami Dolphins defensive lineman Christian Wilkins almost taking out the commish with a shoulder bump last year.
Each first-round pick also will get to select a high school to receive a $2,500 grant toward their football program.
It won't be a normal draft, but the virtual walk-ups will at least add something to what will be a unique broadcast.