Advanced Television

Roku orders NFL Draft doc

May 12, 2023

Roku has greenlit an untitled Roku Original documentary feature focused on the three days of the NFL Draft, from Skydance Sports and produced by NFL Films for The Roku Channel, with the plan for this to be an annual event on the platform.

NFL Films cameras have been given access to the  high-stakes draft rooms where league teams must make choices that will not only define their upcoming seasons, but also change the lives of future players forever.

The documentary feature was shot throughout all three days of the 2023 NFL Draft weekend in Kansas City, Mo., behind the scenes in the players green room, as well as several team headquarters, with reporters, broadcast talent, and key league personnel including NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell. The four featured teams are the Carolina Panthers, who selected Bryce Young with the first pick of the draft; the Indianapolis Colts, who chose fellow quarterback Anthony Richardson with the fourth pick of the first round; the Dallas Cowboys, whose selection of running back Deuce Vaughn – the son of longtime team scout Chris Vaughn –  in the sixth round became one of the draft’s most memorable moments; and the Jacksonville Jaguars, one of the league’s most active teams on the third and final day of a historically frenetic draft that featured the most trades of any in NFL history.

In addition to bringing viewers the new documentary, The Roku Channel has also added The NFL Channel to its Live TV Guide. The around-the-clock channel provides hundreds of hours of curated, official programming from NFL Films and NFL Media, including classic game replays, documentaries, and originals.

Brian Tannenbaum, Head of Originals, Roku Media, commented: “It’s an honour to partner with NFL Films and Skydance Sports to give our streamers first-time, unprecedented access to the excitement, anticipation, and emotion of the NFL Draft. As we expand our original sports content offering, Roku Originals remains committed to sharing authentic stories, from world-class partners, only on The Roku Channel.”

Ross Ketover, Senior Executive, NFL Films, said: “At NFL Films, we take great pride in taking fans to places they have never been through dramatic, high-stakes storytelling. We also seek to bring our very best original programming to new partners and new platforms in the US and all over the world. This project with our new partners at Roku and Skydance Sports promises to do just that and fulfills our longstanding dream of taking audiences inside one of the most special and consequential events on the sports calendar.”

Jon Weinbach, President, Skydance Sports, added: “The NFL Draft is one of the great American spectacles and such a singular setting for documentary storytelling. This is a fantastic project, and we’re enormously excited about bringing fans and viewers into the NFL’s most sacred spaces on one of the most anticipated days in sports. With our great partners at NFL Films, we’re thrilled to create the first of many premium sports programs for Roku’s massive audience.”

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