CLEVELAND — The NFL Draft began Thursday evening along the Cleveland lakefront as thousands of football fans are converging on downtown over these three days.
Hundreds of the top college football players are being chosen over to help fill out NFL rosters for the 2021 season. The first round of the NFL Draft was Thursday. Round Nos. 2 and 3 will be Friday evening starting at 7 p.m. with round Nos. 4 through 7 being held on Saturday.
During the three-day draft, the Cleveland Browns will get nine picks. The Cincinnati Bengals will get eight selections.
The Browns were in an unusual situation for the franchise, selecting late in the first round with the No. 26 overall pick. In the first round, the Browns picked cornerback Greg Newsome II from Northwestern.
The Bengals were among the first teams to make a selection with the No. 5 slot. Cincinnati picked LSU wide receiver Ja'Marr Chase, who was Joe Burrow's college teammate in 2018 and 2019.
The Jacksonville Jaguars, now coached by former Ohio State head coach and Ashtabula native Urban Meyer, made the first overall pick this evening. The Jaguars surprised no one by selecting Clemson quarterback Trevor Lawrence with the top pick.
Unlike last year’s draft, which was held virtually, this year’s draft is in person. Due to COVID-19 protocols, however, attendance to the draft and related events is limited.
Several thousand fans who have obtained tickets to the NFL Draft will be required to submit proof of vaccination before entry. Fans who did not gain entry to the NFL Draft can acquire free tickets for the NFL Draft Experience, which is being held in and around FirstEnergy Stadium. The NFL Draft Experience is an interactive football theme park with activities for all ages.
Both the NFL Draft Experience and the NFL Draft will require the use of face coverings except while actively eating and drinking.