The PFT Planet L.A. referendum

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With ongoing discussion and speculation and reporting about the NFL possibly returning to Los Angeles, there’s a threshold question no one seems to be asking.

Should the NFL return to Los Angeles?

In 16 years away from L.A., the NFL has risen to unprecedented heights of popularity.  Though it’s possible that the NFL would now be even more popular and financially successful with one or two teams in L.A., the question of whether the league truly needs to be there rarely is asked.

The presumption that the NFL will return to L.A. is good for business, allowing multiple teams since the Rams and Raiders left in 1995 to leverage new stadiums under the express or implied threat of a moving there.  But is an eventual return to the NFL something that the fans want?

Let us know what you think.  Cast your ballot in the box below, and add a comment if you care to elaborate.

36 responses to “The PFT Planet L.A. referendum

  1. They did not support teams b4, it will be a 2 year hit, then fade away again. You would think NFL would eventually learn that is NOT a football market.

  2. Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice shame on me. Fool me three times…er…. yeah LA is where dreams go to die.

  3. LA us just not a pro-football town! They like basketball and baseball and college football, but they are just not going to support a pro-football team. Any team going to LA will have a 3 year boom, followed by a 10 to 15 year bust in revenue.

  4. I think L.A. could attract a lot of fans of the visiting team if they offered these perks:

    – Free police escort in and out of games
    – Two armed guards for walk into stadium
    – Free ambulance ride if either of above fails
    – Three-day “Hospital Hopper” passes half price… go between hospital and brain clinic without extra charge
    – Free bus pass to home town for those who couldn’t find their way out of a paper bag after having those gracious host fans beat the visitor’s brains out

    Piece of cake. Now THAT’S why I grajee-ated from college.

  5. With the Lakers Clippers, Angels, Dodgers, Ducks, Kings, and two major college sports teams (USC and UCLA), maybe the LA sports market is saturated.

    Seriously, it may be a massive market, and yes some of those teams are in the “greater LA” area, but that list presents a lot of options for a sports fan.

    An NFL team would likely cannibalize some of those other teams ticket sales given the price of tickets these days, especially in a major market like LA where the owner will perceive a high demand.

    The AEG plan of a combined stadium/convention center type venue is about the only thing that might work as they’d be able to attract events like the AMA conference, the Final Four, etc in the off season since 10 or so football games a year just won’t pay off a $1 billion dollar venue, regardless of the naming rights deal.

  6. One of the wittiest lines I ever heard about LA ownership came from Terrence in Sierra Madre, regarding Ms. Frontiere:

    “Hey, Georgia, who died and made you…oh, never mind.”

  7. “In 16 years away from L.A., the NFL has risen to unprecedented heights of popularity.” So the league doesn’t need representation in Los Angeles. Only local fans have a reason to want a team there.

  8. I’m from North Carolina. I spent 1976-1989 in Tampa. The folks in Los Angeles don’t tolerate home teams who are losers the way my people do. That’s why we have losing NFL teams and they have none at all. Simple.

  9. St. Louis lost a team. As did Oakland, Baltimore, Cleveland. L.A. supported the Rams for 49 years and was the site of the first two Super Bowls. Fox and NBC all have homes here. Most players have homes here also. L.A. deserves a team.

  10. LA is like crazy ex girlfriends. Ever so often you hook back up with her and think, “Man, the sex is great. She’s an amazing cook. And God does she look great!”. And then you remember why you broke up with her to begin with and think to yourself, “Why was I such an idiot to do that again?”. That’s LA. The crazy ex girlfriend of the NFL. It’ll be great for a year or two as LA loves the new “It” places to be. After that? Unless your team is a Super Bowl contender be prepared for half filled stadiums and crappy merchandise sales. Then the NFL will leave and in about 20 years they’ll say, “Why the Hell aren’t we in LA?” and the process starts all over again.

  11. All LA failed to do was have their taxpayers buy new stadiums at great taxpayer expense for wealthy NFL owners to make more money, when other cities were willing to pay a king’s ransom to coax owners to put their teams there.

  12. I think L.A. should have a team but i think they should have to give up one of their basketball or baseball teams to get it.

  13. The problem with LA, is the same issue that exists in Tampa, San Diego and Miami…

    While those cities are great places to live, the vast majority of residents are from other places throughout the country and their sports allegiances are already firmly established. I live halfway beween LA and San Diego, so I get the best of both cities.

    San Diego is a wonderful town with many options for the entertainment dollar, as well as a decently performing NFL team, and yet the only time I go to games are when the Bucs are in town. Many of my friends and neighbors feel the same way… “sure I’ll go to games, ….. when my team is there”..

    I truly think the beast option for LA, is to become “the neutral site” for the NFL. If there is ever an expansion to a 17th game, all teams, could play the 17th game at a neutral site, giving the NFL more chances at exposure to areas that currently don’t have any teams.

    Several “Neutral Sites” throughout North America could “grow the game” is the fashion that the owners want, without moving anyone from their current market, and give fans the opportunity to see their team, regardless if they are in the home market or not!!

  14. @ MichaelEdits:

    “I’m from North Carolina. I spent 1976-1989 in Tampa.”

    And from this you have become an expert on what goes on in LA?


    Describing yourself?

  15. I’m not sure this poll will say a whole lot. Any fan of a team that is rumored to move will say no, in hopes of being a voice in the masses that helps keep their team near-by. And I doubt all of those no’s will be outweighed by the number of people in LA who vote yes because they just want a team, regardless of which team that actually is.

  16. “So the league doesn’t need representation in Los Angeles. Only local fans have a reason to want a team there.”

    @Deb: the same could be said of any NFL city. Who thinks the NFL would suffer without teams in many of the small market cities that have to be supported by revenue sharing. It is obvious that the LA team pool is one ( or more ) of those franchises. It makes sense for the owners’ business model that more NFL teams should be able to support themselves without assistance from the other teams.

  17. I’m a traditionalist. The Rams should go back. I grew up watching and suffering through the 70s Rams, their annual playoff choke, and their revolving door at QB – Harris, Jaworski, Haden, Namath, Ferragamo – did I miss anyone? A franchise QB probably wins a title or two in that era.

    Who else would have the best chance of restoring a fan base? People would yawn at the Jaguars. The Vikings moving is ludicrous. Nobody in LA cares about the Chargers just a few miles south.

    St. Louis is something like the 40th largest TV market. It’s a joke that the NFL let the Rams move. NYC has no trouble supporting 2 NFL teams, 2 MLB teams, 2 NBA teams, 3 NHL teams, college basketball (well, St. John’s has finally become relevant again).

  18. L.A. will have a hard time supporting one NFL team. Why is anyone believing that it will support two?

  19. @Bucngator I agree I went to the Raider Chargers game in SD last year and it seemed like half raider fans half chargers fans. I also went to the cards raiders game and it was more like 3/4 cards fans to 1/4 raiders fans.

  20. @depotnator …

    Was just answering the question put to us, which was specific to L.A. And if the argument is that the league needs a team in the L.A. television market in order to prosper, obviously that’s not true. The league signed the most valuable television contracts in its history without having the L.A. market in play.

    Revenue-sharing is another discussion. Would the league be more prosperous with a large-market team in L.A. instead of the small-market team in, say, Cincinnati? The Bengals aren’t a profitable team, but we don’t know that an L.A. team would be any more profitable. You have to consider the region’s history: If L.A. were a strong NFL market, the area wouldn’t have lost two teams. Would things be different now? We don’t know.

    I’m not opposed to putting a team in Los Angeles, but I am against expanding the league beyond 32 teams. And I’m opposed to ripping teams like the Vikings and Bills away from the fan bases that have supported them for decades … just as I opposed moving the Rams to St. Louis. So I don’t have an easy answer to those who want a franchise there. But L.A. doesn’t need an NFL team to prosper or to have an identity.

  21. LA has too many teams. In most NFL cities, the NFL football team is the main attraction. LA fans would not display the loyalty that is expected of an NFL fanbase.

    The only cities that don’t follow this are NY and Boston (in my opinion….I know Chicago has the Cubs and White-sox, but they fully support the Bears). The Yankees and the Red Sox dominate those two markets, but the Patriots, Giants and Jets have huge geographic areas to draw fans.

    The Giants have a massive following in upstate NY. The Jets have a lot of support within the city and New Jersey. New England has fans throughout the entire Region….5 states claim to be represented by the New England Patriots.

    LA would not represent a huge geographic area because Oakland, San Francisco and San Diego already claim most of the loyal NFL fans in the state of California.

  22. The NFL obviously is just fine without Los Angeles. If someone wants to try and move a team there, more power to ’em. It seems rather foolish to even consider putting two teams there, though.

  23. considering L.A. is either the largest or second largest city in the U.S., I’m not sure if N.Y. is larger or not, i think they should have a team. with that being said however it will be a risky move for a team, because like someone above mentioned most of the people who live in L.A. are from somewhere else and already have a team. but the only way a team in L.A. will work is if that team makes the playoffs within the first two years of being there. that takes out the Vikings, the Raiders, and possibly the Jaguars. I think the best choices would be the Rams or the Chargers, but it sounds like it definitely won’t be the Chargers so that leaves the Rams as the best choice, but if the Rams can’t return home then I say go for the Jaguars. I think in the next two years, if the Jaguars have some solid drafts, they could make the playoffs.

  24. pmars64 says:
    St. Louis is something like the 40th largest TV market. It’s a joke that the NFL let the Rams move. NYC has no trouble supporting 2 NFL teams, 2 MLB teams, 2 NBA teams, 3 NHL teams, college basketball (well, St. John’s has finally become relevant again).

    I looked it up and St. Louis is actually the 21st largest TV market. Market size shouldn’t be a huge determinant of what teams should move. Green Bay is 70th (Milwaukee is only 35th), New Orleans is 53rd, Buffalo is 51st, and Jacksonville is 47th.

    Hmm…Jacksonville. I think we have a winner!

    By the way, Wilkes Barre-Scranton is the next largest TV market after New Orleans. No wonder The Office gets such great ratings.

  25. There’s still a lot of Rams fans here. The Rams would be welcomed back with open arms and people would dance on Georgia Frontiere’s grave.

    Taxpayers (California, LA County, Orange County) have no intention of buying a stadium for some rich owners. The idea that the benefits (for taxpayers) outweigh the financial costs is factually incorrect.

    The difference between LA and a lot of other markets is the NFL needs LA more than LA needs the NFL.

    I’d like to see the NFL come back to LA, but not if it means stealing someone else’s franchise in the middle of the night. I’ve got no interest in the LA Vikings. That would be a sad day.

  26. @ jimmylions:

    “The Rams would be welcomed back with open arms and people would dance on Georgia Frontiere’s grave.”

    Jimmy: Did you know she is buried in Santa Monica? So much for her fondness for St Louis.

  27. LA has had three NFL teams. None are still there. There is a good reason. It is the same reason that the Lakers are not well attended when not contending.

    LA covets winners only. Mediocre teams will die a quick death in LA.

    Everyone knows this. However, a new shiny stadium can offset the loses with a super bowl and other shenanigans.

  28. I love all these people who AREN’T from LA talking about the football atmosphere here in LA! Like you know! Heads up- we love football here! And there was a lot more to the Raiders and Rams than meet the eyes- did you know that the Rams’ move was actually opposed by the majority of NFL owners?

    If you don’t live in or spend significant time here in LA, you don’t really understand the football atmosphere here! I don’t live in Minnesota, I’ve never even been there, I don’t pretend to know what the fans think about the team or football!

    This happens every time a team is about to move- I remember what people said about Oklahoma City before the Sonics moved there. It’s too small, they won’t support the team after the first few years. Look how that has worked out!

  29. @ kidder95:

    “It is the same reason that the Lakers are not well attended when not contending. LA covets winners only. Mediocre teams will die a quick death in LA.”

    So let me get this straight……

    When every other city that has a drop in attendance when the team is bad, that is OK.

    When it is LA it isn’t?

  30. Yeah, but why steal from another fan base, NFL is corrupt since the beginning,some good some bad, make your own team LA, the “LA Riots”, duh.

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