Horrific wildfires that have killed more than 20 and destroyed thousands of acres in the San Francisco Bay Area. Smoke from the fires limited Raiders practice on Wednesday, and Thursday’s session also could be affected.
The bigger question is Sunday, when the Raiders will host the Chargers at 1:25 p.m. local time.
Via Michael Gehlken of the Las Vegas Review-Journal, the Raiders have no comment as to whether an “alternate date, time or location” for the game has been or is being developed. The NFL has not responded to a request for comment from PFT on the issue.
Gehlken notes that the air quality was actually worse on Thursday morning at 9:00 a.m. local time than it was Wednesday at the same time.
“It smells like someone’s barbecuing, to be honest,” quarterback Derek Carr said, via Gehlken. “That’s what I thought. I didn’t know that it would travel like that. My heart really goes out to the families, though. When something like that happens and then someone tells you what it really is, you just sit there and think you’re fortunate; you’re blessed. Our thoughts and prayers are with all the families that have lost houses, loved ones.”
In addition to the smell, ash has been falling from the sky at times.
The options are limited. Moving the game to Monday or Tuesday won’t work, because the Raiders host the Chiefs next Thursday. (And that’s a separate problem, potentially.)
The easiest solution would be to flip the home games in the twice-per-year series, with the Chargers hosting the game now and the Raiders hosting the rematch in Week 17.
If the game moves to a place other than the 27,000-seat StubHub Center, it would have to be moved to an NFL stadium, given the infrastructure associated with the replay process. And the L.A. Coliseum would be a potentially fascinating alternative, given the lingering throng of Raiders partisans who reside in the area.