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When and where is the 2021 NFL Draft

The 2021 NFL Draft is fast approaching and will return to a more public event after being entirely virtual in 2020.

General view of the stage and signage prior to the start of the first round of the NFL Draft on April 25, 2019 in Nashville, Tennessee. Photo by Joe Robbins/Getty Images

The NFL is a week into free agency and we’ve seen a host of huge moves. While teams do think long-term in free agency, it is also the best opportunity to make upgrades that will pay immediate dividends in the coming season. The longer term thinking is meant more for the NFL Draft.

The 2021 NFL Draft is scheduled to run April 28 to May 1 in Cleveland, Ohio across multiple locations. The league announced on Monday the 86th annual NFL Draft will include locations at FirstEnergy Stadium, the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame, and the Great Lakes Science Center. The main draft state will be set against the backdrop of Lake Erie.

The program will air on ESPN, ABC, and NFL Network, with the first round getting underway at 8 p.m. ET on Thursday. The event will be back primarily in person after 2020 saw a virtual version. The COVID-19 pandemic continues, but the downswing in hospitalizations has resulted in re-openings and a greater number of public events.

This year, the NFL will invite a selection number of draft prospects to Cleveland to walk across the state and get a jersey from Roger Goodell. However, the league will also have additional prospects participate in Draft festivities remotely from their homes around the country.