Earlier this month, it was reported that the Players Association was going to hold a separate, head-to-head draft event. The event would be on the same night as the draft and the draft’s best prospects would be at this event instead. After much criticism, the NFLPA has decided to alter their plan. The NFLPA will now hold an event April 28th-30th that will not interfere with the draft and the broadcasts.
The 2011 NFLPA Rookie Debut kicks off Thursday, April 28. Activities for the three-day event will not conflict with the evening broadcasts of the NFL Draft on April 28-29.
The 2011 NFLPA Rookie Debut and “One Team” Celebration is designed to welcome incoming rookies and their families to the NFLPA family, and enable relationships to form between current and former players, NFLPA and NFLPI staff and select corporate partners.
I think this is a better move by the NFLPA. Not having players at the draft would have created an awkward situation for all. The NFL invites 15-20 of the top prospects to attend the draft at Radio City Music Hall in New York City. These prospects are still encouraged not to attend the NFL Draft by the NFLPA. However, several prospects (Julio Jones, Mike Pouncey, Patrick Peterson) have stated that they will attend the draft if invited.
Iowa’s DE Adrian Clayborn via Twitter:
“Accepted my invite to the draft this morning! Exciting stuff.