'Modern Family' Star Ty Burrell Joins the NFL Draft

 

Ty Burrell isn't trying out to be a professional football player, but the Modern Family star will be taking part in the NFL draft Thursday.

The die-hard St. Louis Rams fan, who plays dad Phil Dunphy in the ABC comedy, will be the first celebrity ever to participate in the football league's biggest night, which kicks off Thursday, 5 p.m. PT, at the Radio City Music Hall in New York City and airs live on ESPN.

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Burrell's main duties will be to hand the Rams jersey to NFL commissioner Roger Goodell when the team makes the 13th pick (assuming they don't trade up or down), which could be Texas A&M's Johnny Manziel, aka "Johnny Football," according to analysts. 

The Rams' Twitter page shared their excitement over their star attraction, as well as a flashback from the 46-year-old actor's visit to Rams Park last fall.

The Oregon native's fandom "dates back to our parents, who grew up in Southern California," he told the team's website. "It was the family team, and when the Rams moved to (St. Louis) we stuck with them."

It will be a night of firsts at the draft, as Goodell has decided to let players pick their own presentation music for the first time, according to Bleacher Report, with Buffalo's Khalil Mack already revealing that he is opting for Pharrell Williams' hit "Happy."

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Another major landmark will be University of Missouri defensive end Michael Sam becoming the first openly gay draft prospect. After it was announced that Sam will receive the Arthur Ashe Courage Award at this year's Espys, he told Good Morning America on Wednesday that he's both nervous and excited and doesn't care which team drafts him, as long as he gets a chance to play in the league.

The NFL will begin the proceedings with the national anthem for the first time, with a performance from a West Point cadet who will be joined onstage by military servicemen and women, their mothers as well as alumni from the Wounded Warrior Project.

 

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