12 Commenatry

Bridget Henderson

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The 2017 NFL draft was held last weekend in the city of brotherly love: Philadelphia.

Despite topping lists of “Worst Fans in the Country,” my hometown is an excellent place to hold the NFL draft every year because of our passionate fans and strong spirited city.

Mannequins of each teams’ players were spread around the Benjamin Franklin parkway for this first ever outdoors draft. Along with the perfect photo opportunities, there were also vendors, autograph tents and games set up from the Philadelphia Art Museum in Center City to Logan Square.

The festivities were great, but one record breaking number serves as the main reason the NFL draft should always be held in Philadelphia: 250,000. As many as 250,000 football fans came out over the weekend to support upcoming players and boo Roger Goodell, all for free.

For the first 14 years, the NFL draft was held indoors in New York City. The 2015 and 2016 drafts were held back to back in Chicago. This year, it was Philadelphia’s turn, and they showed up and showed out.

Zander Georgiou, South Jersey resident, attended the draft on Friday night. “There were tons of people. This level of enthusiasm couldn’t be matched by any other city,” Georgiou said.

Did you hear how loud that crowd was? In case your TV didn’t do the noise level justice, Georgiou recapped his experience. “The fans booed Roger Goodell on every single f*cking pick. It was awesome.”  

Goodell is rarely warmly-welcomed by football fans. Philadelphians let Goodell know that that doesn’t change for any special occasion.

Besides the awesome Philly fans, fans from all over the country can come and experience football, history and, of course, cheesesteaks.

There’s no shortage of things to do around the parkway, seeing as the constitution was born right around the corner. Bars and clubs also participated in the draft weekend, holding specials and hosting famous guests.

Philadelphia’s atmosphere is perfect for sports fans. We have craft beer, noisy fans and some of the best food on the east coast. There have already been rumors about the draft returning next year, and I hope to see a new tradition emerge in the coming years.