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NFL Moves the Draft to Prime Time

In just a few days, the Jets will be up at SUNY Cortland for the beginning of their 2009 training camp. And we'll preview camp and our coverage early next week here on, but I just wanted to quickly touch on three league topics before our final weekend without football until February!

Draft Adds a Day, Goes Prime Time

In an anticipated move, the NFL will hold next year's first round of the draft on Thursday night, April 22. Then the league will hold the second and third rounds on Friday evening and finally conclude the draft with rounds 4-7 on Saturday.

"We continue to look for ways to make the draft more accessible to more fans," said NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell in a statement. "Moving the first round to prime time on Thursday night will make the first round of the draft available to fans on what is typically the most-watched night of television."

Start times for the 75th draft, which will be held at Radio City Music Hall and covered by both ESPN and NFL Network, will be 7:30 p.m. ET on Thursday, 6:30 p.m. on Friday and 10 a.m. on Saturday.

If I'm a football fan who lives on the East Coast, I love the switch. You can still get in your full day of work on THURS and FRI and then make evening plans to watch the early rounds. But if I'm a football nut out west and can't dictate my work hours, I might not be too crazy about the move.

More importantly, how will it affect the scouts? The draft will start two days earlier than usual, so they'll be pumped to get it going and spend less time overanalyzing. Another positive for those in the war room will be the ability to restack their boards after the first and third rounds and possibly make better decisions in the later rounds.

Favre Watch Continues

Here's some advice for folks tired of the Brett Favre saga — this is America, people, and you control what you read, what you watch and what you listen to. Don't get upset about something silly because the Jets have completely moved on from Favre.

The guy is a legend and I applaud Mike Tannenbaum for going out and trading for No. 4 last August. It was the right move at the right time. The Jets ultimately decided that acquiring Favre was not only a unique opportunity but it gave them a shot at a championship last season. And after 11 games last year, the Jets appeared a sure shot for the playoffs before a forgetful stretch run.

So many things have changed since late December. The Jets have a new coach in Rex Ryan and they drafted Mark Sanchez, who they believe will be their franchise quarterback for years to come. Sanchez will have to beat out veteran Kellen Clemens for the '09 job in training camp, but he is the Jets' future.

If Favre decides to ultimately sign with the Minnesota Vikings or stay "retired," it shouldn't matter to any Jets fan.  This organization has headed in a new, exciting direction and is not looking in its rearview mirror.

Ruling on Vick

According to multiple reports, suspended quarterback Michael Vick met with Commission Goodell in New Jersey this week. Vick has completed his sentence for financing a dog fighting operation and yearns for a return to the NFL. 

Goodell, who indefinitely suspended Vick back in 2007, has said he'll make a decision in the "near future." If Vick is reinstated, it will be interesting to see if there are any suitors for him.

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