KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) — The NFL draft begins tonight! The Carolina Panthers are on the clock with the No. 1 pick and likely will choose between quarterbacks Bryce Young and C.J. Stroud.
The events at Kansas City’s Union Station start at 1 p.m. Eastern and will include a red carpet and musical acts highlighted by Fall Out Boy.
The draft will begin at 8 p.m. EST and can be viewed on NFL Network, ABC, ESPN and ESPN Deportes.
Follow for live updates from Associated Press reporters across the country (all times EST).
What to know:
- When, where and how to watch the NFL draft.
- Mock Draft! See if your predictions are better than ours.
- Who is the favorite to be the top pick in the NFL draft by the Carolina Panthers?
Florida quarterback Anthony Richardson’s stock has been on the rise, especially given the way he performed in the workouts leading up to the draft.
Richardson’s mother, LaShawnda Cleare, joined him on the red carpet outside Union Station. His younger brother, Corey, was also on hand in a suit that nearly matched big brother and a thick diamond-filled chain of his own.
LaShawnda said of Richardson: “I’ve always been proud of him. Everybody else is now getting to see how awesome they both are.”
Richardson is expected to join Bryce Young of Alabama, C.J. Stroud of Ohio State and Kentucky’s Will Levis among QBs taken in the first round. There could be a fifth in Tennessee’s Hendon Hooker, too.
The pink suit that likely No. 1 pick Bryce Young wore to the NFL draft should resonate in Kansas City: It’s the same jacket by Dior that Chiefs tight end Travis Kelce wore when he hosted “Saturday Night Live.”
The jacket retails for $3,300 and, according to Dior, “reveals an ultramodern and unique silhouette with innovative details.” It is crafted in pink wool twill and “features a removable interior scarf that mimics the style of the sleeves.”
The red carpet, and the styles worn by NFL prospects, has become a big part of the festivities in recent years.
Fellow quarterback C.J. Stroud was blinging with a diamond-encrusted chain in the shape of the No. 7, which he wore at Ohio State. Alabama defensive back Brian Branch wore a diamond-filled chain that included a palm tree and his initials.
Alabama edge rusher Will Anderson Jr. is considered among the best non-quarterback prospects in the NFL draft.
His talent is obvious. The 6-foot-3, 253 pound Anderson has speed, raw power and the ability to dominate a game.
Anderson also takes pride in being well-rounded off the field, too.
“I bring a complete person,” Anderson told the AP’s Rob Maaddi. “I hold myself to a very high standard and high expectation and never to embarrass myself or my family. I always treat people with respect. Whatever culture I get in, I’m gonna do my best to uphold that culture, hold myself accountable. Also, treat everyone in the facility with respect, with care, with love.”
There is usually a buzz of activity around the Kansas City Chiefs practice facility on draft night, when the Super Bowl champs welcome season ticket-holders to a massive party capped by them making their first-round pick.
That party moved about 10 miles west this year to Union Station, where the NFL is hosting the draft for the first time.
Rather than hundreds of cars pouring into the parking lots at Arrowhead Stadium on Thursday night, there was a lonely FedEx worker delivering some packages and one car that apparently got lost and was turning around.
The Chiefs are scheduled to pick last in the first round.
One quarterback that wasn’t on the NFL draft board but was likely to impact some teams’ decisions is no longer in play.
Hours before the draft, the Baltimore Ravens agreed in principle with Lamar Jackson on a five-year deal, securing their star quarterback for the foreseeable future and ending a contract negotiation saga that was dominating the team’s offseason.
It’s fair to say that in Baltimore at least, this news will overshadow whoever the team might take in the first round.
C.J. Stroud has gone from being considered the likely No. 1 overall pick to potentially dropping out of the top 10 after reports the Ohio State quarterback scored poorly in the S2 Cognition test.
“First, second, third, 20th, 105th, whatever it looks like, I’m just blessed to be able to have an opportunity,” Stroud, seemingly not concerned about any of the negative criticism, told AP Pro Football Writer Rob Maaddi hours before the draft. “Wherever I do go, I’m gonna take full advantage of the opportunity.
“I’m not mad about it,” Stroud said of the reports. “I have nothing to hide or to be ashamed of.”
4 p.m.With about 4 hours before the first pick, are you sticking with your guy to be selected No. 1 in tonight’s NFL draft?
Alabama quarterback Bryce Young is the overwhelming favorite according to most oddsmakers and most mock drafts.
The Carolina Panthers will kick things off after trading four draft picks and wide receiver DJ Moore to the Chicago Bears for the No. 1 overall pick.
The Panthers are choosing between Alabama’s Bryce Young, Ohio State’s C.J. Stroud, Kentucky’s Will Levis and Florida’s Anthony Richardson as they try to escape the quarterback quagmire they’ve been trapped in for half a decade.
The NFL draft is set to begin in Kansas City in five hours and one of the more intriguing names to watch is that of Georgia defensive lineman Jalen Carter, writes AP’s Rob Maaddi.
Carter was once projected to be the No. 1 overall pick in the draft before the Chicago Bears made a trade with the quarterback-needy Carolina Panthers.
There are questions about how far the Bulldogs’ standout defensive lineman may slip because of his involvement in a car crash that killed a Georgia teammate and a team staffer. Carter was given 12 months’ probation and a $1,000 fine after pleading no contest to misdemeanor charges of reckless driving and racing
Draft parties in some cities won’t be so raucous tonight because five teams don’t have any first-round selections in the NFL draft that begins in six hours.
Moving up in the draft for quarterbacks has become a common occurrence, but the Broncos, Rams and Browns bucked that trend by parting with their 2023 first-round picks in trades for veteran quarterbacks. The 49ers don’t have a first-rounder because of the Trey Lance trade in 2021 and the Dolphins forfeited their first-rounder for tampering with Tom Brady and Sean Payton while they were with other teams.
AP Football Writer Josh Dubow reviews some of the best and worst trade-ups for quarterbacks.
Who will steal the spotlight with a daring fashion statement at the NFL draft tonight? While top prospects in this year’s draft like quarterbacks Bryce Young, C.J. Stroud and Anthony Richardson prepare their outfits for the big night, Kristie Rieken looks back at some of the most memorable draft night ensembles since Deion Sanders made a splash with his track suit and gold chains in 1989.
Bijan Robinson is expected to be the first running back selected in the NFL draft. How high he goes is the big question.
The Texas star has top-10 talent but NFL teams no longer place a premium on running backs, so he could still be on the board late in the first round. Only four running backs have been selected in the first round since Saquon Barkley was chosen at No. 2 by the New York Giants in 2018. None went higher than No. 24.
“Everybody has their opinions and understandably so because the running back position came to be one-dimensional, but if you have a guy who is really versatile and can line up as a receiver, in the slot and have as much effect (as a receiver) as at running back, that’s when the value really takes off,” Robinson told The Associated Press.
“I understand where people are coming from when they say: ‘If this was 20 years ago, you’d probably be the first pick in the draft.’ But I think if you have a guy who can do so many great things on the field and off the field, then that’s where the value grows a lot more.”
The NFL draft will be held at Kansas City’s Union Station, where the league has built its largest stage complex for its second-biggest event behind the Super Bowl.
Once a fixture at Radio City Music Hall in New York, the draft has grown in popularity since it took to the road eight years ago in 2015. The event has become a major boon for the league, teams and host cities.