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The NFL has announced it is partnering with the historic East-West Shrine Game to increase development opportunities for coaches and draft-eligible players.
The NFL will field the coaching staffs for each of the two teams from current league assistant coaches whose teams do not advance to the playoffs. NFL game officials will also work the contest, which features some of college football’s best prospects.
The 92nd annual East-West Shrine Game will kick off at 3 p.m. ET on Saturday, Jan. 21, from Tropicana Field in St. Petersburg, Florida and be televised live on NFL Network.
“The East-West Shrine Game is not only a showcase for tremendous athletes who have a dream of playing at the next level, it is also a venue for upwardly mobile coaches in the NFL,” said NFL Executive Vice President of Football Operations Troy Vincent. “This is an opportunity to further develop, evaluate and showcase our assistant coaches who may be our next generation of head coaches.”
After the NFL regular season, teams will nominate deserving assistant coaches. Candidates will be reviewed by a panel that includes NFL Football Operations staff, East-West Shrine Game leadership and two members of the NFL’s General Managers Advisory Committee. The panel will select the head coaches, each of whom will then fill his 12-person staff from the remaining NFL assistant coaches nominated by the clubs — a key job requirement for head coaches at every level of the sport.
Coaches nominated by NFL clubs must be active assistant coaches who display extraordinary teaching and communications skills, are recognized for their integrity and commitment to excellence in coaching and are accomplished at developing and preparing players to compete in the NFL.
“It is an honor for the East-West Shrine Game to partner with the NFL to promote opportunities for professional growth and development not only for our outstanding players, but also for the potential future generation of head coaches in the league,” said Harold Richardson, executive director of the East-West Shrine Game. “We are proud to be able to provide a national stage for some of football’s greatest talents to develop their skills and showcase their abilities, all while supporting an exceptional cause.”
For more than 90 years, some of football’s greatest players and coaches have contributed to the tradition of the East-West Shrine Game, the nation’s first college all-star football game. Created by the Shriners in 1925, the game is driven by the desire to support Shriners Hospitals for Children in its mission to help children in need of expert medical care. Each year, players visit the local Shriners Hospital, meeting children and staff in an experience that they will truly never forget.