NFL Notebook: A-plus draft grade for Music City with record attendance
Grading any draft can be challenging, and snap judgments after the last pick usually are far too optimistic.
Yes, Music City couldn't keep the rain away from opening night. Still, closing off both the honky-tonk district and throwing out the welcome mat at the Tennessee Titans' stadium a short walk across a river allowed Nashville to turn the NFL Draft into a football and music festival that drew rave reviews.
"To this point, hard not to give Nashville an A-plus for this draft," said Peter O'Reilly, the NFL's senior vice president of events.
Philadelphia drew a record 250,000 fans over the three days of the 2017 draft, and the NFL also has taken this event to Chicago and Dallas since deciding to leave Radio Music City Hall in New York City. Nashville, which first offered up a 55,000-square foot ballroom back in 2011 for the annual draft, simply smashed that attendance mark with about 600,000 over three days.
Shooting kills college football player, injures Giants' pick
Washburn University's joy over one of its own going to the pros quickly shifted to grief this weekend after a shooting killed a current Washburn football player and wounded the former member of the team who was drafted by the New York Giants just hours earlier.
Police in Topeka, Kansas, where the university is located, said officers found 23-year-old defensive back Dwane Simmons dead when they investigated gunshots shortly before 1 a.m. Sunday. Cornerback Corey Ballentine was wounded, but his injuries were not believed to be life-threatening. Ballentine, also 23, grew up in Topeka and was picked by the Giants on Saturday in the sixth round of the NFL Draft.
Former Oklahoma tight end Carson Meier has signed with the Jacksonville Jaguars as an undrafted free agent.