Re-exploring the L.A. options

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With the Rams playing what could be their final game in St. Louis, it makes sense to revisit the NFL’s options for Los Angeles.

More and more owners, both on and off the record, are saying that the L.A. situation will end at the upcoming special meeting of January 12 and 13. “It has to,” one source with knowledge of the dynamics told PFT.

So how could it all play out? PFT looked at the options on December 6, and it now makes sense to consider them again, with revisions and additions.

1. Rams only in Inglewood. With St. Louis making progress toward the financing of a new stadium and the NFL reportedly kicking in another $100 million to address a public-money funding gap, the Rams may not be able to secure the 24 votes necessary to move — especially with Texans owner Bob McNair joining Panthers owner Jerry Richardson as opponents of a Rams relocation to L.A. Both are members of the league’s Committee on Los Angeles Opportunities.

2. Chargers and Raiders in Carson. The two AFC West rivals have been pushing hard for this outcome, which would make them competitors in the standings and at the box office. Disney CEO Bob Iger, who will formally join the Carson stadium effort if/when it’s approved, already is making phone calls to owners lobbying for the joint venture. Getting 24 votes to move both teams could be a challenge, primarily since plenty of owners seem to be reluctant to help Raiders owner Mark Davis.

3. Chargers only in Carson. While it would require a funding mechanism that would make up for the revenue not generated by playing 10 Raiders game there, some think that the league could decide to give the Chargers the green light to build in Carson, with only the Chargers approved to play there for the next few years, if not longer. There continues to be a strong sense in league circles that, if a mere 17-vote simple majority carried the day, the owners would vote to put the Chargers — and only the Chargers — in Carson.

4. Rams and Chargers/Raiders in Inglewood. Rams owner Stan Kroenke has offered to partner with either of the two teams that have partnered for a Carson stadium. To date, both the Chargers and Raiders have said they aren’t interested in breaking up their unlikely marriage. It’s nevertheless possible that, if one of the two gets a stadium in its current city, it would have no qualms about the other shacking up with Kroenke. (It’s also possible, although very unlikely, that the Raiders would move in to Levi’s Stadium with the 49ers.)

5. Chargers and Rams in Carson. This one would unfold with the Chargers going first and the Rams coming later, if they ultimately can’t work out an acceptable stadium deal to stay in St. Louis. While Kroenke wants to build in Inglewood, a green light for Carson will mean that if the Rams are going to return to L.A. with league approval, it’ll happen only as a partner with the Chargers.

6. Raiders only in Carson. Still not happening.

7. Raiders and Chargers in Carson, Rams in Inglewood. After thinking about this possibility some more, it could indeed happen. But it would require the Rams to ignore the vote authorizing Raiders/Chargers in Carson and to move without league approval, risking litigation from the NFL and asserting in response that the NFL’s relocation rules violate federal antitrust laws.

8. Chargers in Inglewood. It’s a very remote possibility, which would require Dean Spanos to buy the Inglewood site from Kroenke, or it would hinge on Kroenke and Spanos swapping franchises, with Kroenke then moving the Chargers to Inglewood and Spanos keeping the Rams in St. Louis. Unlike the Rams-Colts straight-up franchise trade of 1972, this one probably would require Kroenke to pay Spanos a premium. Even then, Spanos may have zero interest in owning the Rams or any other team in St. Louis. Still, once it’s time for the owners to come up with a solution, anything is possible.

Multiple league sources have expressed a strong belief that, regardless of how the L.A. situation specifically plays out, it will end with the Chargers moving to L.A. Still, there are plenty of moving parts, and every potential option should be regarded as being on the table as the Rams, Chargers, and Raiders play a high-stakes game of poker, chess, checkers, chicken, and musical chairs.

41 responses to “Re-exploring the L.A. options

  1. Rams alone in la in 2016. Next year someone moves in to the stadium with them and/or a team goes to San Antonio. Chargers will never get the stadium they want and I don’t think the raiders really want to move but just may be out of options. Problem is, if you are an nfl owner and you want to compete you must own your stadium. Being another owners tenant won’t fly for long

  2. How Spanos has convinced anyone with half a brain he is entitled to the la market by proxy of San Diego is beyond me. Chargers are the last team the league needs in LA

  3. If you are going to continuously print the assertion league owners are reluctant to help mark Davis then give a reason why. Otherwise you are talking out of your wrong end

  4. As long as none of the owners get a dime of public money to build a stadium I don’t care which team(s) do or do not move there.

    I applaud the cities that stood up to the massive, disgusting greed of the billionaires.

  5. In a sternly worded letter to Gov. Jay Nixon and his stadium task force, NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell warned that the league has no current plans to provide $300 million toward construction of a riverfront stadium here.

  6. As Buffedman states, the NFL did NOT promise another $100 million. Per Goodell in today’s STLToday.com article:

    “But on Thursday, NFL officials wanted to make sure no one was taking league money for granted.

    In a sternly worded letter to Gov. Jay Nixon and his stadium task force, NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell warned that the league has no current plans to provide $300 million toward construction of a riverfront stadium here.

    The NFL provides a maximum of $200 million to help teams build new stadiums, Goodell wrote. The premise that the league has committed $300 million to the Mississippi River stadium proposal “is fundamentally inconsistent with the NFL’s program of stadium financing,” he said.”

  7. This is the second time the NFL has tried to torpedo our voting process the night before a vote.

    It wont work.

    Tomorrow the stadium plan will be approved.

    Then, we cross our fingers, and see what happens…

  8. spiffybiff says: Dec 17, 2015 9:22 PM

    If you are going to continuously print the assertion league owners are reluctant to help Mark Davis then give a reason why. Otherwise you are talking out of your wrong end
    ——————————————————

    I would not let Mark Davis park my car. He’s Boo Radley in a Members Only jacket.

  9. Move the Rams back to LA, keep the Chargers in San Diego, move the Jaguars to St. Louis, and move the Raiders to Mars.

  10. The only team with an above average chance to succeed in a move is the Raiders. .like it or not. We have the strongest fan base and the team is on the up..rams and chargers just suck plain and simple.

  11. People living in Los Angeles prefer the Rams come back. But since when has the NFL cared what the fans actually want?

  12. Two things…
    1) as much as I think San Antonio would be cool, it’s much more likely we’ll get three teams in L.A. before we get three teams in Texas.

    2) pillaging4fun…that would make for one interesting new Pirates of the Caribbean ride lol

  13. REALIGN divisions. Send the rams to an AFC team on the east cost if they play in the eastern time zone. I’m sick of the stupid ish. Why do my hawks or cards or niners need to play divisional games on the road across the country and at 10 am in a quiet and empty stadium. It’s a huge huge disadvantage to West coast teams and makes no damn sense.

  14. You PFT guys are so blind….. the McNair & Richardson comments are a leverage spin to SD….. Spanos needs all the help he can get….. Meanwhile, Stan has all the $$ and he’s already breaking ground in Inglewood for a new stadium…… And don’t put stock into the STL stadium plan – which is really a hail-mary by Gov Nixon…..and the public dollars aren’t secured……

    Mark it down – the Rams will be in LA next season

  15. Probably the best solution:

    Kronke and Spanos agree to swap franchises with:

    1. The Rams physically staying in St. Louis and the Chargers moving to LA and eventually playing in Inglewood and nothing else done.

    2. Same as 1, except the current Rams and Chargers swap names and conferences (current Rams become the St. Louis Chargers and move to the AFC West, current Chargers become the Los Angeles Rams and move to the NFC West).

    3. Spanos and Kronke keeping their respective franchises, but with the Rams moving to LA and eventually to Inglewood while the Chargers move to St. Louis to replace the Rams there.

    As for the Raiders, the NFL works with the Davis family to keep the team in the Bay Area, maybe moving down to San Jose if a new stadium can’t be built in Oakland OR if one can, working with the 49ers and baseball Giants to work out sharing arrangements so the Raiders and A’s can temporarily play in the other’s respective parks while a new stadium is built for the A’s and Raiders in Oakland to replace the (except for Mt. Davis built in 1996) outdated Oakland Coliseum that opened in 1966 on the site of that building.

    Probably the best of some bad scenarios there.

  16. At first I thought Kronke was the only “good guy” in this soon to be fiasco, in that he was willing to self finance a stadium in a city he desires to increase the value of his team. Other owners, partly jealous of the equity leverage of the LA market (thanks, Ballmer) and the fact that Kronks is “going rogue” by not seeking public dollars which jeopardizes future stadium deals/upgrades for other teams, sought to box him out with the Raiders & Chargers.
    Now though, I think the NFL is aware of public financing backlash, and have conspired with Iger to use Disney moneyto finance the Carson project. What Disney gets, not sure, maybe stadium rightsand revenue, or a stake in one of the teams. But I would not at all be surprised to hear soon that the Carson project will be privately funded, screwing Kronke and forcing him to move elsewhere, or stay in Missouri. This would satisfy everyone save Rams fans in SoCal and taxpayers in St. Louis. And of course, Silent Stan.

  17. Since when do the Rams have anywhere near as much support in LA as the Raiders? The Anaheim Rams have tried all of this before and nothing has worked except StL – Kroenke is nuts for leaving that town. Put a decent team on the field and watch the rebirth.

    But nowhere near as nuts as Spanos and any NFL owner who wants to side up with him. Mark Davis has played ball with the league since Al’s passing – mystified as to why people would continue the narrative that the NFL doesn’t want to work with him. Bizarre.

  18. “primarily since plenty of owners seem to be reluctant to help Raiders owner Mark Davis.”

    so not fair, he is NOTHING like his dad.. almost the complete opposite

  19. Truly, the Chargers don’t have any home. LA doesn’t want them and won’t support them, it’s the worst choice. San Diego doesn’t want anything to do with the Spanos family and will never trust anything he says again. He’s established they’re his toy and have no connection to the city.

  20. Good lord, what a mess, so typical of today’s NFL.

    Put the Rams back in LA where they always belonged. St. Louis can’t even fill the stadium with giveaway tickets on the possible final game of the season. Most St. Louis sports fans will look you straight in the eye and tell you they can’t stand the NFL, and that they prefer baseball.

    And leave the Raiders in Oakland…where THEY always belonged.

    As for the Bolts, does anyone really think they’ll draw any sort of audience in LA…even if they’re the only team there?
    They should either stay in San Diego or disappear. They’re a mess.

  21. Wow! I cannot believe there are still people out there who think the Jags are moving!! They aren’t going anywhere!!! A $90 million dollar stadium renovation and new practice fields were approved for the team, and the owner is using $30 million of his own money. Do you really think Shad will move his team after spending that much money on stadium upgrades??

  22. From what I see the only two debates are over: A) Who the second team might be, and B) Whether the NFL approves Kroenke’s move or it goes to the courts. Because every indication is that he intends to move the Rams and he’s not going to let any owners vote stop him.

  23. 10) Make LA a neutral site, extend the season to 17 games with an extra bye week. Have 8 non- conference games here a year. The other weeks have the neutral games in London, Mexico City, etc. No team will be successful in LA unless they are winning, see Lakers, Dodgers, Kings, USC, etc.

    We don’t want your left over trash.

  24. LA has had its chances over the years to prove it is a football town. Its not, so stop trying to relocate teams there.

    It is not fair to the fans of San Diego, Oakland and St. Louis.

    Fan of the Baltimore Colts and Ravens.

  25. “spiffybiff says: Dec 17, 2015 9:22 PM

    If you are going to continuously print the assertion league owners are reluctant to help Mark Davis then give a reason why. Otherwise you are talking out of your wrong end”
    _______________________________________________

    There is contingent of owners that do not want the Raiders in LA. Most of it has to do with a few of the old-line owners that still hold contempt and animosity for the late Al Davis. They also worry about whether Mark Davis can revamp the organization toward maximizing revenue.

  26. LA has had its chances over the years to prove it is a football town. Its not, so stop trying to relocate teams there.

    It is not fair to the fans of San Diego, Oakland and St. Louis.

    Fan of the Baltimore Colts and Ravens.

    Baltimore had its chances over many years with the Colts, and failed for the same reason LA failed in the past: lack of a modern football-only stadium.

    By your logic the NFL should never have returned to Charm City.

  27. The Chargers will move — alone or with another team — because the old guard owners are all about protecting Dean Spanos. They could not care less about the fans in St. Louis, Oakland, San Diego or Los Angeles.

    It has been noted over and over that L.A. fans have no interest in the “Los Angeles Chargers”. That brand will be a total flop. L.A. and Orange County want the Rams and Raiders, with the Chargers staying down in San Diego. But unfortunately that is the one option the NFL old guard owners will never consider.

  28. BIG RED says:
    Dec 17, 2015 9:53 PM

    This is the second time the NFL has tried to torpedo our voting process the night before a vote.
    —————————-
    Actually … your politicians torpedoed your voting process. You don’t get to vote on whether your taxpayer money will fund a new stadium. The law requiring a public vote was struck down in court.

    What you have is the NFL doing what it does best, squeezing as much money as it can from local politicians who can’t wait to start a new construction project.

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