Every year, the NFL Draft becomes a bigger and bigger production, with debate over which marginally pedigreed quarterback should be drafted first (Carson Wentz, really?) forever stretching earlier and earlier into the offseason.
With that in mind, ESPN could not possibly part ways with its co-president of endless draft speculation. Thus, the network has announced a long-term extension for Mel Kiper Jr.’s younger, more traditionally-coiffed foil, Todd McShay.
According to a press release, McShay will “continue to be a prominent year-round voice, providing analysis across ESPN television networks, ESPN Radio, ESPN.com and ESPN The Magazine.”
“This was the right decision for a number of reasons,” McShay said in the release. “ESPN has always been the driving force behind the NFL Draft and it’s the home of the College Football Playoff. Plus, working at ESPN is like being part of the ultimate team, and I’ve been fortunate to develop many strong friendships here. I’m excited about the draft and my future at ESPN.”
As per the agreement, McShay will provide draft analysis before and after the first round, then sit on set for rounds two through seven. He will also contribute to various college football broadcasts, including the College Football Playoff National Championship, Senior Bowl, NFL Scouting Combine and more.
It makes obvious sense for all parties to keep McShay in Bristol. ESPN has broadcast rights to the NFL Draft and won’t likely forfeit them any time soon, meaning the network will continue to push the draft as one of the marquee events on the sports calendar. And while there are probably many people out there who could offer proclamations about mid-tier draft prospects that none of us can really contest, McShay has clearly built a brand for himself, alone and in tandem with Kiper.
And for McShay, there isn’t really any other outlet that would allow him so much exposure. The only competitor with anywhere near the attention to the NFL Draft as ESPN is NFL Network, which already has Mike Mayock as its resident draft guru.
McShay has been director of college football scouting for ESPN’s Scouts, Inc. since 2006 and part of the network’s NFL Draft presentation since 2009.
The NFL Draft begins April 28, so you can see whether McShay, fresh off his new contract, is wearing a spiffier suit or wider grin than usual.