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NFL Rumors: 2017 Draft to Be Hosted in Philadelphia?

Chuck Anderson-USA TODAY Sports

This is super news if true.

Philadelphia could finally host a huge event for the NFL with reports surfacing that the 2017 NFL Draft will be held here in Philadelphia.

According to Wendy Ruderman of Philly.com via U.S. Rep Bob Brady, the Mayor of Philadelphia has set in motion plans to host the league holiday next April.

The U.S. congressman said in an interview Thursday that the draft, held in Chicago the last two years, would take place in Philadelphia in April.

Although the city did not confirm that a deal had been made, Brady (D., Phila.) said that Mayor Kenney called him Thursday to tell him that the city had agreed to host the draft and to commit $5 million to pull off the three-day event.

“The NFL wanted to come here, which is a good start,” Brady said in a phone interview. “I talked with the mayor. The mayor had a concern about money because he didn’t want to put the city in debt, rightfully so, so we had to go around and see if we could get some people that would help finance it and I think we were kind of successful.

“We’ve been dealing with this for the past couple of weeks, maybe three weeks, and [Kenney] just called me this afternoon and told me that we got the NFL, that the city is going to do it and he feels comfortable that the people who said they were going to help raise the money are going to do it.”

According to Brady, the only holdup could be the mayors concern about the financial commitment and whether the city can pull it off without putting all the burden on taxpayers.

Congressman Brady told listeners that the Building Trades Union would put in more than $1 million toward building a temporary stage and arena, and the event could be held outside with reports of the Ben Franklin Parkway seating about 3,000 spectators.

-- Glenn Erby

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