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They built a fake Art Museum on the NFL draft stage in front of the actual Philly Art Museum

They built a fake Art Museum on the NFL draft stage in front of the actual Philly Art Museum

Live draft coverage begins Thursday at 5 p.m. with Philly Sports Talk and continues until midnight on CSN, CSNPhilly.com and the NBC Sports App.

So why didn't they just have the NFL draft at the Wells Fargo Center? It's a question many have asked in the weeks leading up to Thursday's kickoff of the 2017 draft. Especially from local Philly residents who have been inconvenienced by all of the road closures in the area.

The answer is pretty simple: because that doesn't look as cool. And they needed room for the behemoth of the Draft Experience for fans, probably.

But really it's about optics.

The NFL wants things to look cool.

You know what looks cool on television from an aerial shot? The Ben Franklin Parkway, the Philadelphia Museum of Art, and the Schuylkill River behind there somewhere with some pretty boat houses lit up at night reflecting off the river.

Except logistics sometimes get in the way, so if you can't actually see the Art Museum on TV with the gigantic stage that is still being installed in front of it, well... just build a fake one.

That's what the NFL is doing.

BillyPenn's Dan Levy was at the media walk through of the space on Tuesday and described the faux pillars in a very thorough post.

"Let’s be clear, it looks awesome," Levy writes. "But it's fake. The columns are made of a dense foam, secured with metal rods running through. No, a brisk wind will not knock them down, nor will an exuberant draftee walking out from the players' green room, which is set up behind (and above) where the Commissioner will introduce them."

NFL Director of Event Operations Eric Finkelstein explained the thought behind the look yesterday.

"There's a little bit of an illusion there. You found us out," he said. "We wanted to highlight, not only the Rocky steps, but the Museum -- real staples of this city to show this event is Philadelphia and part of Philadelphia. So we have replicated the front of the museum as part of our stage."

Who's taking bets on whether they'll get Sly Stallone to show up or if they'll get that random dude who wears a grey sweatsuit around town with a black fedora to make an appearance?

Regardless of how the giant structure may look in person, we're willing to bet it's going to look dope on TV.

For all of your other draft in Philly related questions, the best place to start is to download the "NFL Draft" app from your cell phone's app store. It has maps, FAQs, schedules, etc. It also has a barcode you can use when at the draft to try and be a seat filler inside the "closer" portion of the draft theater on Thursday through Saturday. That's different from the Draft Experience area that is open to all fans without a ticket.

We also have a photo gallery with some more video from the Parkway right here.

Flyers mascot Gritty comes down from Lincoln Financial Field roof before Flyers-Penguins 2019 Stadium Series

Flyers mascot Gritty comes down from Lincoln Financial Field roof before Flyers-Penguins 2019 Stadium Series

Flyers vs. Penguins.

Outdoor hockey.

Lincoln Financial Field.

Yeah, you knew Gritty had something up his sleeve (or fur?) for Saturday night's Stadium Series at Lincoln Financial Field.

In fact, we had a warning: 

Well, Gritty did not disappoint.

The guy actually came down from the roof of the Linc, lit up like a Christmas tree, as you can see in the video above.

Oh, and Gritty was not done. He got loose during a break in the second period.

This is Gritty's first outdoor game. He'll have many more, but this one will be especially memorable for the orange fella.

There's been plenty of other Gritty fun, too.

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Eagles social media pokes fun at MLB free agency

Eagles social media pokes fun at MLB free agency

Just how ridiculous is the Bryce Harper saga right now? Even the Eagles' social media team is getting in on poking fun at Twitter’s most infamous source of MLB news.

Heyman, a well-respected member of the MLB media community, has earned such a dig by the Eagles from his nonstop posts about MLB free agency that don’t seem to advance the story or provide new information.

In fact, each one of his tweets are now met with memes and replies poking fun at that very fact.

He is, however, still breaking news and has been on the forefront of the Manny Machado, Bryce Harper beat. However, the length of time both of these megastars have taken to make their decision is hurting Heyman’s Twitter clout. Or, is Heyman hurting himself, posting so many updates that go nowhere?

Either way, the Eagles' social media team probably came up with this idea, asked someone if they thought it was funny and they said, “Sure, why not, let’s post it.”

This is another reminder of the level of lunacy this MLB offseason has reached. Fortunately, the Phillies will play a real baseball game on Friday and NBC Sports Philadelphia+ will have its first broadcast of the spring this Saturday.

As for now, we continue to wait.

Click here to download the MyTeams App by NBC Sports! Receive comprehensive coverage of your teams and stream the Flyers, Sixers and Phillies games easily on your device.

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