NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell expressed optimism on Friday after meeting with Minnesota leaders, saying he believes the state legislature will soon pass a bill to finance the construction of a new stadium for the Vikings.
“We think it was a very productive session today,” Goodell said. “We appreciate the governor and the legislative leaders and the business leaders for being here today. I think our presence here is a signal of how important it is to the National Football League that the Minnesota Vikings continue to be here in this community and continue to be successful. We believe after many, many years that the time has come to pass the legislation to move forward. We expect and we hope after today’s meeting that there’s a general commitment to do that in this session and that will ensure the fact that the Vikings will be here for a very long time.”
There has been increasing talk in recent days that the Vikings may move if the state doesn’t pass a bill to finance the construction of a new stadium, and that talk has been characterized in some quarters as a threat to move the team to Los Angeles if the NFL doesn’t get what it wants. Goodell said that’s not the case.
“There were no implied threats or any threats at all,” Goodell said. “What we talked about is the importance of creating a solution here that works for the team and works for the community.”
Still, the message is clear: The NFL expects a stadium bill to be passed soon. If it isn’t, all options are on the table, including moving to a new stadium about 2,000 miles away.