With the NFL draft less than a month away, arugably the most exciting, anticipated time of the offseason is upon us. Between mock drafts, pro days, and prospect interviews, there’s a lot to look forward to over the next several weeks.
However, if it was up to our very own John Harbaugh, we wouldn’t have to wait so long to see which players are selected on draft day. Out of all the coaches who spoke to the media at last week’s NFL owners meetings in Arizona, Harbaugh was the only one who touched on the actual date of the draft and brought up some interesting points.
“I think the draft should be earlier,” said Harbaugh. “We don’t need to be so involved where we need three months to watch the players ourselves. Let’s draft these guys, let’s get them to us”.
Harbaugh definitely isn’t alone in this sentiment, as many have been voicing for the draft to be moved earlier in the offseason for quite some time. It’s hard to see where Harbaugh is coming from and he certainly makes some valid points.
Moving the draft to say, early April, or even late March, seems like a logical idea. This would benefit all parties involved - the players, the fans, and each NFL organization. Given how long the NFL offseason is already, having the draft over three months out from the end of the regular season only makes it drag on longer.
Obviously, for the few teams that advance into the divisional, conference, and super bowl rounds of the postseason, the time gap between the end of the season and the draft is not quite as long, but these teams still have more than enough time to go through their preparation.
Acquiring rookies earlier in the offseason would give organizations more time to work with them and get them adjusted to training schedules, routines, and further their development. It works both ways, too, as the incoming players would be given extra time to acclimate themselves to the demands of the NFL and get started with their new teams.
Harbaugh also touched on this, as well.
“And let’s be honest … nobody’s taking their last semester of school. You want to get in the real world? Let’s understand how that works,” said Harbaugh. “Let’s get them working on football so they can contribute their first couple of years”.
It’s definitely an interesting topic to discuss, and Harbaugh’s words may serve to spark a potential ongoing debate about moving the draft up in the near-future. Whether or not it actually gains traction and amounts to anything remains to be seen, however.
What do you think? Is Harbaugh correct - should the NFL move the draft up sooner in the offseason? Be sure to vote on the poll and leave your thoughts down below!
Do you agree with Harbaugh?
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