Alabama wide receiver Jaylen Waddle appears on the red carpet before the NFL draft in Cleveland on Thursday.

Alabama wide receiver Jaylen Waddle appears on the red carpet before the NFL draft in Cleveland on Thursday.

(David Dermer / Associated Press)

CLEVELAND — Thirty-two tidbits on the first NFL draft to be held in Cleveland:

1. The draft stage in Cleveland is enormous — 220 feet wide, 225 feet deep and 95 feet tall — with a surface area bigger than the combined stages of the drafts in Nashville and Philadelphia.

2. Waiting in the wings are four No. 1 jerseys of all 32 teams. When a first-rounder in attendance is selected, the league can print his name on the back of a given jersey in 45 seconds for his big moment on stage. The garment is still warm from the iron.

3. The NFL shipped out commissioner Roger Goodell’s leather recliner from last year’s virtual draft in his basement. That will be a centerpiece on stage.

4. Goodell will have a jar of M&M’s next to his chair, just like last year. The candies are dark blue and white, as the league was careful to stay away from the colors of any particular team.

5. Gone are the 32 team desks, and the jars of M&M’s in the colors of those clubs. Those candies and the jars tended to go missing after the first night of the draft.

6. In order to recreate Goodell’s basement, designers also brought out the Mike Ditka bobblehead he had in there. Last year, after every selection, that toy would be moved to a different spot behind the commissioner’s. Keen viewers noticed that, because the league didn’t say anything about it.

7. The best seats in the house belong to the “Inner Circle” boxes in front of Goodell. Each team selected 12 vaccinated fans who get to sit in those prime spots.

8. Teams aren’t arranged at random in the Inner Circle. Cleveland is up front, as the host city, as are Jacksonville (first pick) and Tampa Bay (Super Bowl champion). Then the teams are clumped by divisions and rivalries, so for instance, Green Bay and Minnesota are next to each other, as are the Rams and San Francisco, Chargers and Las Vegas, etc.

9. Behind the Inner Circle is the Fan Zone, filled with 4,400 vaccinated spectators, most of them local educators, front-line and essential workers.

10. Everyone in those sections will be given a big blue, shiny sticker that reads “COVID-19 Vaccinated,” as part of the league’s effort to promote vaccinations.

11. Twelve of the top prospects are in attendance, and 46 more received “tech kits” featuring a directional camera that’s controlled by the league and a computer, allowing those future pros to turn their homes into makeshift TV studios.

12. That number was originally 45 tech kits, but Virginia Tech cornerback Caleb Farley had to pull out of attending because of a positive coronavirus test.

13. Five of the 12 players in attendance are from the University of Alabama.

Alabama quarterback Mac Jones appears on the red carpet at the NFL draft in Cleveland on Thursday.

Alabama quarterback Mac Jones appears on the red carpet at the NFL draft in Cleveland on Thursday.

(David Dermer / Associated Press)

14. The projected top pick, Clemson quarterback Trevor Lawrence, isn’t at the draft, nor is Ohio State quarterback Justin Fields. Quarterbacks Zach Wilson, Mac Jones and Trey Lance are on site.

15. FirstEnergy Stadium, home of the Cleveland Browns, is being used as part of the NFL Draft Experience for youth clinics, and so fans can run 40-yard dashes.

16. An expected 50,000 people per day will attend the NFL Draft Experience.

17. The NFL experimented with live music at the Nashville draft in 2019 and will do so again in Cleveland. Kings of Leon will play on the main stage tonight, followed by Black Pumas on Friday, and Machine Gun Kelly on Saturday.

18. Ann Wilson, who along with her sister, Nancy, formed the rock band Heart, will sing the national anthem. Heart was inducted into the neighboring Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2013.

19. There are lots of nods to rock and roll at this draft. The NFL has created unique record album covers for every team — Chicago’s for instance is burnt orange with a growling bear under the words “Monsters of the Midway” — preserved in shrink wrap. Everyone sitting in the Inner Circle will receive one of the collectables. There isn’t a record inside, but a piece of vinyl that features an NFL draft etching.

20. The album covers all have price tags on them, and the amount is the established date of when each of the teams came into the league. So the Chargers album is $19.60, whereas the Houston Texans are $20.02.

21. When a selected player makes the “hero walk,” from his individual green room to the stage, it will be through a rock-and-roll-themed hallway, decorated with old-style speakers that have team marks on them, and other speakers that light up in that particular team’s colors.

22. When a club is on the clock, the entire venue will glow in that team’s colors. There are lights in the pits on either side of the stage, and one of the buildings downtown, the historic Terminal Tower, will likewise be lit in the different team colors. That’s visible when looking out from the stage.

23. Players attending the draft will wait in individual pods — part green room, part living room — along with their families. They’re carpeted with stylish couches lining the walls. Just like in a game, a camera on a cable will hover overhead, zipping from pod to pod.

24. Waiting in the room for each player is an NFL football embossed with his name, footballs stitched at the Wilson factory in Ada, Ohio, 160 miles to the west.

25. The production is in Cleveland, but the nuts and bolts of the draft will be handled in a nerve center at NFL headquarters on the sixth floor of 345 Park Ave. in New York City. The NFL management council will be in touch throughout, online and via phone with the 32 teams, who submit their selections and trades to the league office.

26. Fifteen teams will be in draft rooms in which everyone is vaccinated, so they can operate without face coverings and eat in the rooms. Every club is staging some type of draft-related fan event.

27. The second day of the draft will feature 32 NFL legends — seven Hall of Famers — or current players who will announce the selections. One of them is former Dallas Cowboys receiver Drew Pearson, who revved up Cowboys fans, and grated on Eagles fans, with his boisterous remarks from the podium during the Philadelphia draft.

28. NFL Network will kick off the event with a special opening by Browns icon Jim Brown against a backdrop of U2 music.

29. In its Day 3 broadcast, NFL Network announcers will play its annual game of “Stump the Truck,” in which the production crew is challenged to dig up footage of the most obscure of selections. “We’ve been stumped, but we’ve gotten a lot of guys, too,” said Charlie Yook, who oversees the draft broadcast. “We had footage of a punter through a chain-link fence. We’ve had grainy footage of prospects from Division II schools. It’s a testament to preparation of the men and women of our staff.” Stay tuned for Saturday.

30. NFL Network has 39 cameras on site, including a “snoop cam” in Goodell’s green room for a peek at what he’s doing between picks.

31. “Run Rich Run,” the tradition of NFL Network host Rich Eisen running a 40-yard dash for charity will be a Saturday sidelight. This year, he ran at SoFi Stadium with legendary NFL players Jerry Rice, Ray Lewis, Cris Carter, Rod Woodson, Michael Vick, Torry Holt, Eric Metcalf and Terrell Davis.

32. The next two drafts will be in Las Vegas and Kansas City. The 2024 site has yet to be determined but likely will be announced at the 2021 fall meetings.