A record total of 26 players will attend Draft weekend to walk the stage to receive their jersey of their new club and congratulations by NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell.
Here is the key information about Draft weekend, as supplied by the NFL Communications office with links to the full draft list grid and compensatory selections published earlier on BlogAndTackle.net:
WHAT: 77th Annual National Football League Player Selection Meeting.
WHERE: Radio City Music Hall, 1260 Avenue of the Americas, New York City (Between 50th and 51st Streets).
WHEN: 8 pm ET, Thursday, April 26 (Round 1); 7 pm ET, Friday, April 27 (Rounds 2-3); Noon ET, Saturday, April 28 (Rounds 4-7).
The first round will conclude on Thursday by approximately 11:30 pm ET. In 2011, the first round consumed three hours and 30 minutes. The second and third rounds will conclude on Friday by approximately 11:15 pm ET. The second and third rounds took four hours and 15 minutes in 2011. The draft will conclude by approximately 7:30 pm ET on Saturday with the final four rounds. Rounds 4 through 7 took seven hours and 23 minutes in 2011.
DRAFTING: Representatives of the 32 NFL clubs by telephone communication with their general managers, coaches and scouts.
ROUNDS: Seven Rounds – Round 1 on Thursday, April 26; Rounds 2 and 3 on Friday, April 27; and Rounds 4 through 7 on Saturday, April 28.
SELECTION ORDER: 2012 NFL Draft selection grid
NUMBER OF SELECTIONS: There will be 253 selections, including 32 compensatory choices that have been awarded to 15 teams that suffered a net loss of certain quality unrestricted free agents last year.
Cleveland (Nos. 4 and 22), Cincinnati (Nos. 17 and 21) and New England (Nos. 27 and 31) have two selections in the first round. Atlanta, New Orleans and Oakland do not have first-round picks. All other teams have one first-round selection.
COMPENSATORY CHOICES: The following 32 compensatory choices will supplement the 221 regular choices in the seven rounds:
Round 3: Oakland, 33.
Round 4: Minnesota, 33; Oakland, 34; Baltimore, 35; New York Giants, 36; Green Bay, 37; Green Bay, 38; Minnesota, 39; Dallas, 40.
Round 5: Oakland, 33; Baltimore, 34; Indianapolis, 35.
Round 6: New York Jets, 33; New York Jets, 34; Cleveland, 35; Cleveland, 36; Indianapolis, 37; Carolina, 38.
Round 7: Pittsburgh, 33; Green Bay, 34; New York Jets, 35; Green Bay, 36; New York Jets, 37; Cleveland, 38; Pittsburgh, 39; Cleveland, 40; Pittsburgh, 41; Atlanta, 42; San Diego, 43; Buffalo, 44; St. Louis, 45; Indianapolis, 46.
PICK ANNOUNCERS: NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell will announce each pick in Round 1 on Thursday, except for Detroit WR Calvin Johnson, who won the EA Sports Madden 13 cover athlete contest. Johnson will announce his club’s scheduled selection at No. 23. In addition, members of the U.S. Armed Forces from the Army, Navy, Air Force, Marines, Coast Guard and the Wounded Warrior Project will be honored on the stage during the NFL Draft.
The NFL previously announced that 33 legendary NFL alumni, one representing each team and two representing the St. Louis Rams, will announce live on Friday second and third round Draft picks from Radio City Music Hall. This continues a successful program that began last year in which every selection in the second round is announced by former players. Also, three fans who won Draft Dream sweepstakes will announce three picks in Round 3.
Saturday in Round 4, 23 fans who won contests from individual clubs will call the picks.
In Round 5, three fans and an NFL Films employee will announce four selections.
In Round 6, a fan from the Radio City Music Hall audience will announce a pick.
In Round 7, another fan will be picked from the Radio City audience to announce a selection and the founder of the Mr. Irrelevant Award, Paul Salata, will announce the 253rd and final selection of the NFL Draft.
TIME LIMITS: Round 1: 10 minutes per selection. Round 2: Seven minutes per selection. Rounds 3 through 7: Five minutes per selection.
TELEVISION: NFL Network and ESPN/ESPN 2 will televise the draft on all three days.