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Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

This year's NFL draft was set to be its biggest spectacle yet, held on The Strip in Las Vegas, with players being transported by boat to the red-carpet stage in the middle of the Bellagio Hotel fountains.

Yes, but: Instead, it will — like most things in our lives these days — be held virtually, with commissioner Roger Goodell announcing selections from his basement and players being shown at home via remote cameras.

Mock draft:

  1. Bengals: QB Joe Burrow, LSU
  2. Redskins: DE Chase Young, Ohio State
  3. Lions: CB Jeff Okuda, Ohio State
  4. Giants: OT Tristan Wirfs, Iowa
  5. Dolphins: QB Tua Tagovailoa, Alabama
  6. Chargers: QB Justin Herbert, Oregon
  7. Panthers: LB Isaiah Simmons, Clemson
  8. Cardinals: OT Andrew Thomas, Georgia
  9. Jaguars: DT Derrick Brown, Auburn
  10. Browns: OT Jedrick Wills, Alabama

What to watch: The NFL plans to show small draft parties for 58 prospects and interview them when their names are called. To accomplish this, the prospects were mailed technology kits with thousands of dollars of video equipment.

  • "The result will be roughly 180 different video feeds, and a lot of technology complications. Dry runs this week have produced mixed results," writes Bloomberg's Eben Novy-Williams.
  • A story worth noting: In a recent draft, one team was eyeing a player and started watching the livestream of his draft party. When they saw a team tell him on the phone that they'd be taking him with their next pick, the first team traded up, ahead of the second team, to draft the player.

How to watch: It will be broadcast on ABC, ESPN, ESPN Deportes and the NFL Network, and can be streamed via the NFL app.

The bottom line: Without the ability to gather in one location with all the top prospects donning expensive suits and thousands of fans screaming their lungs out, this year's draft will lack some of its normal pageantry and energy.

  • But the broadcast will still accommodate plenty of spectacle and could draw more interest than ever before from sports-starved fans.

Go deeper

Updated 58 mins ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

  1. Health: Large coronavirus outbreaks leading to high death rates — Coronavirus cases are at an all-time high ahead of Election Day.
  2. Politics: Top HHS spokesperson pitched coronavirus ad campaign as "helping the president" — Space Force's No. 2 general tests positive for coronavirus.
  3. World: Taiwan reaches a record 200 days with no local coronavirus cases.
  4. Sports: MLB to investigate Dodgers player who joined celebration after positive COVID test.
  5. 🎧Podcast: The vaccine race turns toward nationalism.

The norms around science and politics are cracking

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

Crafting successful public health measures depends on the ability of top scientists to gather data and report their findings unrestricted to policymakers.

State of play: But concern has spiked among health experts and physicians over what they see as an assault on key science protections, particularly during a raging pandemic. And a move last week by President Trump, via an executive order, is triggering even more worries.

Ina Fried, author of Login
2 hours ago - Technology

Apple sets September quarter sales record despite later iPhone launch

Apple CEO Tim Cook, speaking at the Apple 12 launch event in October. Photo: Apple

Apple on Thursday reported quarterly sales and earnings that narrowly exceeded analysts estimates as the iPhone maker continued to see strong demand amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

What they's saying: The company said response to new products, including the iPhone 12 has been "tremendously positive" but did not give a specific forecast for the current quarter.