NFL Bringing 2024 Draft to Downtown Detroit; Lions on ‘Hard Knocks’

The National Football League Monday announced it has selected Detroit to host the 2024 NFL Draft in the areas around Campus Martius Park and Hart Plaza. The exact dates were not announced, but the draft likely will be held from April 25-27, 2024.
The National Football League announced the 2024 Draft will be hosted in Detroit. // Courtesy of Wikimedia Commons
Hart Plaza and Campus Martius Park will host activities surrounding the 2024 NFL Draft. // Courtesy of Wikimedia Commons

The National Football League Monday announced it has selected Detroit to host the 2024 NFL Draft in the areas around Campus Martius Park and Hart Plaza. The exact dates were not announced, but the draft likely will be held from April 25-27, 2024.

Besides the Super Bowl itself, the NFL Draft has evolved to become one of the most anticipated sports events of the year for tens of thousands of fans who will attend the three-day event and millions more watching and engaging around the world.

The announcement was made at the annual National Football League meeting in Palm Beach, Fla. following a review of the proposal by the league’s Fan Engagement and Major Events Advisory Committee and full ownership.

“The draft has become a prominent offseason event across the country, and we are excited to work with the Lions and their partners to bring the 2024 NFL Draft to the Motor City,” says Roger Goodell, commissioner of the NFL. “With the help of Visit Detroit, the Detroit Sports Commission, the city of Detroit, the Lions’ passionate fan base and all visitors will be treated to an incredible three-day experience.”

As part of the event, the NFL Draft Experience — the NFL’s interactive football theme park — will provide fans a free opportunity to take part in participatory games, enjoy interactive exhibits, musical performances, and autograph sessions, and take pictures with the Vince Lombardi Trophy. The Draft Experience will be open all three days of the event.

“Today is an historic day for Detroit with the announcement that the 2024 NFL Draft is coming to the Motor City,” says Claude Molinari, president and CEO of Visit Detroit. “Visit Detroit is looking forward to working with our partners in the hospitality community to welcome enthusiastic football fans from across the country who will make our city a pigskin pilgrimage stop. Hosting the draft is another exciting win for Detroit, and it will deliver a powerful economic impact and highlight the vibrancy of our region.”

The 2021 NFL Draft in Cleveland was seen by an average audience of 6.1 million viewers (TV and digital) across ABC, ESPN, NFL Network, ESPN Deportes, and digital channels for the three-day event, making it the third most-watched draft ever.

“As we learn that Detroit has been selected to host the 2024 NFL Draft, today is momentous for our city and the Detroit Sports Commission,” says Dave Beachnau, executive director of the Detroit Sports Commission. “Hosting the NFL Draft in Detroit promises to be a celebration of our community’s spirit. It will deliver high value for our residents, businesses, and the great fans who make Detroit the best sports city in America. Our partnerships with the Detroit Lions and other valued community organizations helped make this bid a reality. Now, the real work begins with our focus on our collective commitment, contributions, and collaboration. We are steadfast to host a tremendous event in 2024.”

This year’s draft is taking place in Las Vegas on April 28-30, followed by 2023 in Kansas City on April 27-29.

“We are thrilled the NFL has selected Detroit to host its 2024 draft from among a number of other great candidate cities,” says Detroit Mayor Mike Duggan. “Detroit is one of America’s great sports towns with some of the most dedicated and passionate football fans you’ll find anywhere. Holding the draft here will be a perfect opportunity for visitors to experience that energy, along with the world-class entertainment, cultural attractions, and international riverfront our city has to offer.”

The Detroit Sports Commission and the Detroit Lions will host a free, football-themed community event for fans of all ages on Thursday, April 14, at Campus Martius Park to celebrate the awarding of the 2024 NFL Draft to Detroit.

Fans interested in more information on the 2024 NFL Draft in Detroit can register here.

The NFL also announced Monday that the Detroit Lions would be the featured team in its HBO Sports show “Hard Knocks,” which follows a team from the beginning of training camp to the first game of the season.

The five-episode season will debut Tuesday, Aug. 9 (10-11 p.m.) with additional hour-long episodes debuting subsequent Tuesdays at the same time, culminating in the Sept. 6 season finale.

“We are excited about the opportunity to showcase the city of Detroit and the amazing culture we are building at the Lions,” says Rod Wood, president and CEO of the Detroit Lions. “HBO Sports and NFL Films are the best of the best and we know they will be excellent partners in sharing our story with football fans around the world.”

“Hard Knocks: Training Camp with the Detroit Lions” will chronicle head coach Dan Campbell entering his second season leading the team — a mix of young emerging stars, established veterans, free agent additions and highly regarded rookie hopefuls throughout training camp and the preseason. It will be narrated by Liev Schreiber, marking his 16th season with the show.