The NFL’s TV ratings possibly were down by two percent for the first night of the draft in Nashville possible because all those extra people were actually at the draft in Nashville.
Via the Tennessean, the NFL initially estimated that 500,000 fans attended the event from Thursday through Saturday, before adjusting the estimate to 600,000.
With no turnstiles or other means for getting an official head count, the math can get fuzzy -- and the numbers can conveniently get inflated, since the bigger the event seems, the better the deal the NFL can get from the cities that will be hosting it in the future.
Indeed, the Nashville Convention and Visitors Corp estimated crowds of 200,000 for Thursday and 200,000 for Friday, per the Tennessean. The third day, as usual, ended up being more sparse (as the photo accompanying this article suggests). Then again, the third day seems to last forever, so maybe 200,000 were there at different stages of a very long afternoon/early evening.
Whatever the official number, and whether it was or wasn’t influenced by the introduction of “alternative facts,” the draft is a big deal. Even though the ultimate reality show’s ultimate reality show is ultimately a show about nothing, since in light of today’s technology the whole thing could be done via group text message.