Philadelphia Comes Together for NFL Draft

By Tom Long, Sports Talk Philly staff writer 

The NFL Draft has found itself in Philadelphia this year. As a result, sports fans and residents alike are buzzing around the city, looking for fun festivities taking place.

Among some of these activities, ESPN's Mike & Mike and First Take are hosting live shows in South Philly on Thursday and Friday morning this week at Chickie's and Pete's. 

I went down to South Philly to watch Mike & Mike's show on Thursday morning. Unlike my prior experience visiting them in Tampa, FL., I was surprised to find hundreds of people waiting in like to attend these shows. As I began walking to the back of the line, I found people sleeping in tents, camping chairs, and on the ground, suggesting that these fans might've been in line all night. This was, mind you, at 5:30 a.m., just another example of the passion, love, and heart the city has for sports.

After contemplating whether or not to stand in line, I decided to leave because the line was so long, it was assumed I probably wasn't getting in. However, it was inspiring to see the massive turnout and the amount of Eagles green waiting in line.

As I adventured Philly on Wednesday night, I noticed the large banners that called attention to the draft on nearly every street lamp. I even took a few Uber rides where the drivers first comment was "Hey, the NFL Draft is in town, you are headed somewhere for the draft, right?" 

This was also even more evident when it came time for the Eagles to make their first-round selection on Thursday night. At the mere announcement that the Eagles were on the clock, a thundering roar filled the amphitheater that held the Draft stage. It's an excitement that has been lost at times when the teams have been on the field of play, and also the undying passion that Philly fans carry.

Philadelphia is embracing the NFL Draft this year, as Philly fans often do with their sporting events and teams. I found it incredible that an entire city comes together for their sports teams or, in this case, the NFL Draft. Now, fans will keep a close eye on Howie Roseman and Joe Douglas, as they attempt to execute their draft strategy beyond the opening round of picks.

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