That’s a wrap on the 2022 NFL Draft: 7 rounds over the course of 3 days, and in the end we saw 262 players drafted by the 32 NFL franchises. Over the next few weeks you’ll see an endless number of articles offering up draft grades and opinions on which teams passed and failed – (we’ll leave those articles to the football experts), and instead, as the live production experts, we’re going offer up grades for some of the 2022 NFL Draft productions we caught over the weekend.
The world of live video production is often chaotic and unpredictable, and the NFL Draft is a marquee example of this. Production teams have to be prepared for any (and all) possibilities and then react on the fly. It’s remarkable to watch the best in the industry flex on the production world and you may notice these “All-Pro” crews share similar themes across them all: strong engagement, interactive graphics, and seamless sponsorships weaved throughout. But enough of the chit-chat – let’s get into the rankings (scoring inspiration from our friends at WeRateDogs).
Hours upon hours of live coverage across linear & digital platforms. The production team at the NFL Network worked from Las Vegas & Los Angeles to pull off several All-Pro productions around the NFL Draft. Their broadcasts were seamless, featuring interactive segments like #StumpTheTruck and instant reaction shows after each round (of course powered by Tagboard Graphics – and yes that’s a #ShamelessPlug). Another year and another world class showcase by everyone working behind the scenes at the NFL Network. 14/10 very good production.
The team at Bleacher Report streamed live from their newly designed set in New York City. When it comes to creating cross-channel engagement, you can’t do much better: the second screen experience aired live on the Bleacher Report App and their YouTube Channel. It featured incredible reactions to the most shocking moments, picks as NFL insiders announced them on Twitter and in-depth breakdowns from draft analysts, current and former NFL players. The production was social-focused, entertaining, and flowed well. 13/10 Emmy-worthy production.
The Lions do a lot well on their live productions, but one area they really shine is sponsorship monetization. If you look at their graphics they make sure their partners are getting their money’s worth, but they do it in a really clean and simple way. Player stat cards had a sponsorship on them, their Play GM polling had sponsorship, there was a rotating ticker that was sponsored and they sponsored an ultimate fan giveaway. Sponsorships are so necessary to support these productions and the cost to pull them off. 15/10 moving beyond viewership and into participation.
Steel City leaned into the Sin City theme and their Countdown to the Draft show featured blackjack with Seth Meyers and a poker style mock draft. In addition to the Vegas theme they brought in fan responses to the best draft pick in Steelers history, live reports from Vegas and they have one of the cleanest tickers in the game. 12/10 A Hall of Fame number to signify the HOF quality production.
Taking command of the draft with a clean L-bar, the Commanders production team was busy with pre and post draft productions. One of our favorite things from their production was instant reaction with their first round pick and then a QR code that would send you to their team store to purchase his jersey or other draft day merchandise. It’s a great example of using a QR code in a meaningful way and giving your fans quick access to the latest gear. The constant scroll of information on their side bar made for a really educational and entertaining production. 14/10 this production would go in the first round of the production draft.
The Cowboys have an entire Twitter account dedicated to their draft coverage, and it came to life during their 2022 draft coverage. If you operate a podcast and don’t think you need cloud graphics, Dallas shows how it’s done. Their show is more of a traditional podcast, but they use graphics to add to the viewing experience for their fans and open more areas for their sponsors to have their logo seen. Their team offered instant analysis of each pick and pulled off a clean 5 hour production on day one with more than 10 thousand Twitter views. 11/10 CLEAN show, would highly recommend, so let’s match their score to their address, 11 Cowboys Way in Frisco.
New England Patriots
Live from Gillette Stadium the Patriots put on a party featuring a live audience and at-home audience with a rolling ticker of reactions from #PatsNation. No shock that the 6 time world champions put on a world class production from start to finish. Some highlights are their use of the QR Code where fans could scan and enter for a chance to win a Draft Party Sweatshirt or take part in their interactive polls. In addition to interactivity their usage of graphics to highlight the run of the show, like upcoming interviews, kept fans locked into the broadcast as they waited to hear from Robert Kraft and Head Coach Bill Belichick. 12/10 GOAT level production.
Green Bay Packers
The draft hype was buzzin all week and the Packers leaned into that buzz the day before the draft with their 2022 Virtual Draft Party. Another production that showcased their sponsorships very well – from the ice chest in the background to the rotating logos at the top of the L-bar graphic. Being that it was the day before the draft we loved their usage of the countdown clock and integration of CTA graphics to highlight an exclusive promo code for those watching the show live. 12/10 Back-to-back MVP quality production.
Kansas City Chiefs
The production team in KC put in the work to bring #ChiefsKingdom instant reaction to both of their picks in the first round. The perfect second screen experience for fans who can’t wait to hear about their team’s newest addition. It also shows the speed and efficiency at which you can get a livestream up and running to provide analysis and opportunities for your fans to engage with your broadcast. The Chiefs do a great job of this in season as well during the post game press conference. 12/10 similar to their 2021 record, this is a playoff worthy production.
All of these examples really highlight how a seasonal sport can keep the content machine rolling outside of what might be considered their season. Curious about more ideas on how to win the off-season? We have you covered. Or if you want to start integrating Tagboard into your productions, just click the button below to get connected with our team ;).