Rams owner Stan Kroenke announced to the Los Angeles Times that he plans to build a football stadium in Inglewood, California. Implicit in the announcement is an intention to move the football team he owns there.
In response to a request for comment from PFT, the league office has provided a statement that sheds no further light on whether Kroenke will be able to move the Rams from St. Louis to Los Angeles as soon as 2016.
“No team has applied for relocation and there will be no team relocations for the 2015 season,” NFL spokesman Brian McCarthy said via email. “We are committed to working towards having franchises that are strong and successful in their existing markets. Any decision on relocation in 2016 or later is subject to approval by the 32 clubs. An affirmative vote by 24 of 32 clubs (three-fourths) is required.”
While the Rams technically must comply with the league’s relocation policy before moving (which requires exhaustion of all reasonable efforts to remain in their current location), McCarthy’s comment shows that, ultimately, it comes down to what 24 owners are willing to approve.
It’s still not known whether Kroenke has made his announcement with a wink and/or a nod from the league office, or with knowledge/belief that he’ll have enough votes in 2016. Either way, it immediately creates an awkward situation in St. Louis — especially with the Rams already accepting deposits for 2015 season tickets.