The first step to the 2021 NFL season is here as the first round of the 2021 NFL Draft is approaching. The future stars of the NFL will have their name called in front of the world as teams select from among the best college players in the country. This draft will be a return to normalcy after last year’s draft was done virtually at the homes of coaches. Expect all of the familiar NFL Draft tropes like the audible boos at NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell while he’s hugging and dapping players.
Projected No. 1 overall pick Trevor Lawerence declined the NFL’s invitation to the draft. Projected No. 2 pick Zach Wilson and Justin Fields also declined the league’s invitation. The 10 players that will be in attendance on draft day are Mac Jones, Trey Lance, Ja’Marr Chase, Heisman-winner DeVonta Smith, Kyle Pitts, Christian Barmore, Gregory Rousseau, Micah Parsons, Caleb Farley, and Patrick Surtain II. They will be joined by a cap of 50,000 fans in attendance.
Here’s how you can watch the first round of the 2021 NFL Draft.
When does the 2021 draft begin?
The 2021 NFL Draft is scheduled for Thursday, April 29, 2021, at 8 PM ET and will be airing on ABC, ESPN, and NFL Network. The draft will be held in downtown Cleveland, Ohio across from First Energy Stadium.
How do I watch the 2021 draft?
AntennaWeb is a great tool you can use to see what ABC channel is available in your area with an antenna.
Locast: Viewers in one of the 30 markets served by Locast will also be able to watch on their local ABC for free with the service
Cord cutters can watch the first round of the 2021 NFL draft by subscribing to any streaming service that carries ESPN, ABC, or NFL Network. Choosing from any of these subscription services below has its benefits because there are no hidden fees, you can cancel anytime with most offering a free trial for new subscribers.
- AT&T TV Now: Subscribers to the AT&TV Now can watch the NFL Draft on ESPN, and ABC, and over 60 other channels for only $69.99/month with their Entertainment package. 20 hours of DVR is included so you won’t miss your team’s pick, and you can record your other favorite shows.
- Hulu + Live TV: For only $65/month, Hulu + Live TV gives you access to ESPN’s and ABC’s coverage of the 2021 NFL Draft. Plus, subscribers get over 65 channels, and access to Hulu’s large library of content including exclusive shows and movies. With 50 hours of Cloud DVR included you’ll be able to record all the trades and selections of the draft.
- fuboTV: Perhaps the best sports-orientated streaming service is because subscribers can watch ESPN, ABC, and NFL Network for full coverage of the NFL Draft, over 130 events in 4K, and 100+ channels, starting at $64.99/month. 250 hours of Cloud DVR means there is plenty of room to save your favorite events.
- YouTube TV: For $65/month, YouTube TV is a great service for watching NFL Network, ABC and ESPN for full coverage, the 2021 NFL Draft, and over 80 other channels. With unlimited Cloud DVR storage, it’s the perfect place to record the draft, sports analyst predictions, games from the upcoming season, and have the ability to come back to it at season’s end.
- Sling TV: Sling has a few different packages to watch the 2021 NFL Draft. For only $35/month subscribers to the Sing Blue package can watch the first round on NFL Network, or catch all the coverage on ESPN with Sling Orange. Fans can watch the draft on both channels with Sling Orange + Blue for only $50/month. Starting at 44 channels, Sling also offers 50 hours of Cloud DVR storage and is one of the most affordable services to watch the 2021 NFL Draft.
- Vidgo: NFL Network, ESPN, and ABC are part of the 95 channel lineup available on Vidgo. Catch all of the Round 1 action of the 2021 NFL Draft for only $55/month.
Predictions: Expect a steal at QB
The San Francisco 49ers made a shocking trade for the No. 3 overall pick that may have a huge ripple effect when it comes to QB-needy teams looking for their QB of the future. The 49ers are reportedly interested in Mac Jones or Trey Lance with the 3rd pick, which will leave Ohio State QB Justin Fields on the board for a team who is looking for a draft day steal. Passing on Fields for Lance or Jones would be a bold move if 49ers head coach Kyle Shanahan ends up doing so. If Fields does get passed up at No. 3, and the Atlanta Falcons choose not to take the hometown talent at No. 4 then expect the Patriots or Broncos to make a trade at No. 8 with the Panthers to snag him. Since the Broncos pick at No. 9 and the Panthers pick at No. 8, it would not be shocking if the Panthers make a deal with Denver to get more assets for the future and the Panthers pick a QB at No. 9 since they haven’t committed to Sam Darnold’s fifth-year option yet.