Disney is boosting its commitment to the NFL’s marquee offseason event. Its ABC network will be the exclusive broadcast home for the 2019 NFL Draft, airing all three days including two nights in primetime.
The net will produce its own distinct telecast for the ABC audience, separate from NFL Network and Disney sib ESPN, during the first two nights of coverage. ABC, the home of Monday Night Football for its first 35 seasons — will simulcast ESPN’s presentation on Day 3 for the second straight year. The draft is set for April 25-27 in Nashville.
ABC’s primetime draft specials will be anchored by College GameDay, ESPN’s long-running college football pregame show. Personalities from ABC — which has covered the NFL Draft since 1980 — and other special guests will be part of the multi-night ABC presentation.
“ESPN is constantly seeking opportunities to innovate and expand our coverage of major events, and the NFL Draft is a perfect example of that,” said ESPN President Jimmy Pitaro. “There is no better way to celebrate 40 years of working with the NFL to grow the draft than to bring the considerable assets of the Walt Disney Company to Nashville.”
“The addition of broadcast television for all three days of the 2018 NFL Draft helped to bring this important offseason event to even more fans and resulted in the highest-rated and most-viewed draft ever,” said Brian Rolapp, Chief Business and Media Officer for the National Football League. “We’re looking forward to once again broadcasting all three days of the NFL Draft and excited to have another member of the Disney family with us to help grow this event and showcase the future stars of the NFL.”
Fox and NFL Network aired the first three rounds of the 2018 NFL Draft live in primetime in April.