NFL has no comment on the Raiders’ Las Vegas flirtations

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Given the NFL’s attitude toward gambling, along with the league’s past statements regarding staging games in Las Vegas, the knee-jerk reaction to the prospect of the Las Vegas Raiders is that it will never happen. Curiously, the league isn’t willing to say that, yet.

“We do not have a comment,” NFL spokesman Brian McCarthy told PFT via email. In 2013, McCarthy had a comment; he told the Las Vegas Review-Journal that legalized gambling in Las Vegas would likely keep the NFL from putting the Pro Bowl or preseason games there.

As many have pointed out, the league hardly has had consistent positions when it comes to gambling. The NFL gradually has expanded its presence in London, where betting parlors are as commonplace as sandwich shops, taking a “when in Rome” approach to the cultural acceptance of wagering there. Likewise, the league has embraced daily fantasy football for money, which the federal government says isn’t gambling — but which a growing number of states says is.

Ultimately, it doesn’t have to make sense or be consistent. It just has to get 24 of 32 votes from the league’s owner. The location of any team reflects a collective decision of NFL ownership, and there’s no rule or policy that automatically makes Las Vegas or any other location off limits. Plenty of factors go into the decision regarding whether and where a franchise moves.

One of the factors that likely has gone into the league’s position on the Raiders’ nascent flirtations with Las Vegas is this: The Raiders need a way to squeeze Oakland into helping build a stadium. Slamming the door preemptively on Vegas will make it harder to get money for nothing from the folks who currently are willing to do nothing to keep the Raiders.

So even if the NFL would never approve a move of the Raiders to Las Vegas, there’s no harm in withholding final judgment to see whether Oakland will continue withholding taxpayer money as more and more potential destinations for the franchise emerge.

75 responses to “NFL has no comment on the Raiders’ Las Vegas flirtations

  1. But also, i don’t know if the NFL is interested in another mother of all lawsuits. The Raiders are homeless right now. I wouldn’t be surprised if the deal is too good to pass up for Davis.

  2. If they work out a deal there just take Raider games off the board in Vegas.

    The world will not end. Plus the NFL owes the Raiders a little something after giving them a participation trophy for the LA relocation contest.

  3. The visions of the Las Vegas Raidaaaas is intriguing. I can visualize the bigger than life massive stadium, with all kinds of gizmo stuff, some sort of nfl 7d ride attached to it) show girls (topless?) for cheerleaders, (first half family friendly, second half, show the kiddies out and par..deee!)cirque do sol’e actors flying around with the field and sky cameras, card tables in the lounges, free drinks, hotels giving comps for tickets to suites, free upgrades to better seats if you flip a c note, etc, free tickets and hotel packages for away team fans with players cards etc…. shoot, it would be a blast!

  4. If the NFL refuses to let the Raiders go to Las Vegas they’ll have a tough time explaining a team in London.

  5. I think the NFL would kick a lot of money to the Raiders to stay in Oakland if this were the only alternative. Vegas is obviously going to be LA TV market, so the new LA teams aren’t going to like this at all, and the other owners will not like the risk of saturating a new market so quickly.

    Also, Al Davis did not pay relocation fees after moving to LA and then back. It’s doubtful that Mark would pay the relocation fee if he won a court battle to move, so that’s another $550 M that the other owners would lose out on.

  6. And what about New Jersey, where both the Giants and Jets play? They have legalized gambling in Atlantic City.

  7. If the Raiders want to move to Vegas, or anywhere else, they will move, and they won’t pay the NFL a “Transition Fee” either.

  8. The Vegas Flamingos (formerly the Oakland Raiders) with Johnny manziel at qb and town host. Yeah I’d watch that.

  9. And what about New Jersey, where both the Giants and Jets play? They have legalized gambling in Atlantic City.
    I believe the NFL looks at the metro area, not the whole state. If a team were to play in Las Vegas market Reno, Tahoe, Elko etc would still be able to wager on Raider/NFL games. The question is whether the NFL would force Las Vegas to stop all NFL action (not happening) or just Raider games.

  10. Sounds cool with me a Vegas stadium would be awesome and I don’t think the Raiders would give a damn if the NFL didn’t like the move in fact they’ve been anti authority towards the NFL since before it was cool.

  11. Then all they’ve gotta do is change the name to the Heathens!!!!!

    The Las Vegas Heathens! I like it already!

  12. Squeeze Oakland for leverage on a new stadium.

    he he he

    Think this out.

    It probably took pixie cut 2 seconds to realize that moving the Raiders to Vegas would be the best idea he could possibly ever come up with. If the value of the Raider’s franchise would double with a move to Los Angeles, it might come close to triple with a move to Vegas.

    Southwest would be running in a hundred planes a weekend bringing in raider fan from all over the West Coast and Southwest.

    The only thing the NFL should worry about is whether Vegas’s police force will be able to handle the festivities.

    This would make NBA All-Star weekend look like a boy scout convention.

    The possibilities are scary.

  13. Contrary to what was written earlier on this site, I think the NFL is actually very intrigued by the idea of having a team in Las Vegas. Especially if it comes with a state of the art $1 billion stadium.

  14. Only problem would be I wonder if they would let people bet the Raider games in Vegas. For awhile you couldn’t bet the in state college teams. If I can’t bet against the Raiders when I’m there then I have to give more money to my offshore companies.

  15. the Vegas Raiders rolls off the tongue nice….if Mark finds a deal that is doable by partnering up with UNLV then it would be a very nice stadium i am sure, and if the NFL blocks him from moving then i would think they would have to fund the gap and help get the stadium in Oakland built,,,,you can’t hold a team by the tail and watch them squirm, sounds like a lawsuit if they just keep blocking stadium deals that a team keeps making!

  16. As an East Bay native, I really hope the Raiders find a way to stay in Oakland, but I have to admit “Sin City Raiders” does have a nice ring to it.

  17. The Raiders or any team do not need the NFL’s approval to relocate. Al’s Anti-Trust Lawsuit made sure of that. Even if the NFL tried to take it to court again, Sheldon Alderson would love that.

  18. Remember how the league’s committee that included several owners voted for the Raiders and Chargers only to have the secret ballot end up 30-2 approving the Rams move? Who knows what would happen if they took a secret vote on the Raiders moving to Vegas. Guaranteed there are some far-sighted owners who’d support the idea, especially via a secret ballot.

  19. Are you kidding me? The NFL absolutely EMBRACES gambling, because they know without it they’d lose a tremendous amount of interest in the league. Injury reports, fantasy football, say what you want, the league in many ways caters to gamblers. All those office pools with the Super Bowl squares that draw in people who could care less for most of the year and help drive up viewership numbers… This anti-Vegas stance is hypocritical. Putting a team there is going to make it that much worse?

  20. And allllll the American cities and states with teams that ALLOW gambling now? Lame case to say no.

    One wonders why the Shield appeased the parties in the LA moves. So they wouldn’t get their asses sued imo..

    Denying a move on that basis due to Nevada’s number one industry, gaming, (that the NFL partakes in handsomely ) doesn’t fly Roger. ANY team that wants to move to Vegas or anywhere will move.

    Oakland has already been approved to move and passed by agreement of the Mob 32 that it can move. And it should not matter where.

    Ooops… did I just say Mob?

  21. Sports Talk Radio is debating this issue from Coast to Coast and the vote is all positive that the NFL could sell out a stadium weekly in Vegas and everyone in the Country would flock to Vegas Football for vacations.This would mean big bucks for the NFL and they are not opposed to change their stance on any issue if enough money is laid on the table.

  22. The NFL is already the most seedy, inherently unsafe, and imperialistic sports league in the entire world. You cannot rightly take tens of millions of dollars in advertising money from Draft Kings and Fan Duel in one hand and then slap sports books as being unethical with your other hand. It’s pure hypocrisy. Oakland doesn’t have money for a stadium, the country is slipping into recession, and Vegas is feeling bullish. Let it happen.

  23. What is so Gosh Darn bad about Oakland!!??

    Fans don’t give a dang-gone-it about the stadium and the jumbo tron. If they wanted to watch the game on a TV screen they would have bloody stayed home!

  24. The NFL is getting hidden billions in gambling money from the daily fantasy sites which they have shadow ownership of.

    So not only do they have all the billions the league normally generates, they have huge amounts of additional funds from the daily fantasy sites and they’re still trying to extort cities into paying for their stadiums.

    Disgusting beyond words the level of greed these people have.

  25. NFL owners have absolutely no shame in extorting, threatening, bribing politicians, or demanding that the poor taxpayers give them a free gold-plated lavish stadium/ palace. Has Davis realized that Alameda County taxpayers are STILL paying for the lousy renovations made to the Oakland Coliseum done in 2000?

  26. The mad ginger and the poorly dressed human thumb would do anything to get a dollar out of the city of oakland. Please don’t cave. The city and its residents shouldn’t subsidize billionaires. If they leave, so what? You can’t go to the games, but you can still be fans and watch the games on TV. Save your tax dollars, it isn’t worth it.

  27. Since the Raiders and Chargers don’t have a home, why not send one of them to London and leave Jacksonville alone?

    The you could move the London team to the AFC South, and put the Houston Texans in the AFC West.

  28. WOW!

    How fantastic could this be? I’m sure the Teamsters Pension Fund would gladly support building the Stadium too!

    AND….. The NFLs gripe is allowing teams where there is a Sports Book. There’s virtually a casino in every state now (one walking distance to Ravens Stadium), but Sports Betting is only allowed in several states.

  29. Atlantic city as well as Indian reservations dont have sportsbooks….thats the difference between them and vegas….dont get me wrong id love to see it happen… i do agree with one of the first few posters the NFL would have a lot to explain if the move/make a franchise in London, hell you can bet on soccer matches at the stadium over there

  30. Hey we have gambling in Pennsylvania I guess we gotta send the steelers and eagles to another state let the stench of these 2 classless organizations polute another states air

  31. As a fan of NFL football, I would wholeheartedly support a move to Las Vegas by the Raiders. It’s such a perfect fit. You can drink and smoke publicly. You can gamble. It’s wine, women, and song. All the things that one should think of with a true pirate theme, Las Vegas has in droves. If only they could afford to get a stadium built on or near the Strip. The Raiders would quickly become a financial powerhouse of the NFL. And THAT is why the other owners wouldn’t allow a move of any team to Las Vegas.

  32. The NFL’s concerns made sense a few decades ago.

    Before Fantasy Football.

    Before you could bet on any game from anywhere via the internet.

    Before almost every state had some sort of casino industry.

    Before the NFL got in bed with Daily Fantasy Sports.

    These days, the NFL’s attitude towards Vegas is anachronistic.

  33. ” If only they could afford to get a stadium built on or near the Strip.”

    The proposed stadium deal, the one the Raiders are flying down to check out, would be right off the Strip.

    The Sands convention center and UNLV are looking at a partnership.

  34. The move to Las Vegas would benefit everybody but the Raiders’ bottom line. They would be a glorified circus act designed to bring more gamblers to the city. Plus they would open a conduit for corruption to infiltrate the team, league, and and multitude of distractions for the players. I wouldn’t let Mark Davis move to Vegas, man a mobster can easily extort him.

    If I were the owner of the Raiders I would do exactly what the Warriors are doing and set up shop in San Francisco. By moving the team to San Francisco Mark Davis would run the Bay Area. The 49ers would be looked upon as Santa Clara/San Jose outcasts. If you want to play chess. Get some investors, build a stadium in San Francisco and call the squad The Bay Area Raiders, or Golden State Raiders. The Bay Area media and billion dollar corporations would get behind the Raiders and they’ll be printing money like the San Francsico Giants.

  35. I’d be surprised if the mob would want the duplicitous NFL in Vegas.

    At least the mob has honor and integrity.

  36. Meanwhile the L.A. stadium has said it wants to be Red Zone and Fantasy friendly. Ya, neither of those two things has anything to do with gambling. When one of your Thursday night games was Browns/Jaguars, ya no one watching that was gambling either. Hypocrites. If this move were to happen you would suddenly find 31 other owners pressuring their states to allow sports betting.

  37. Slots and table games have no bearing on the NFL. So all of those commentors saying Atlantic City and KC have casinos are missing the point. Las Vegas allows gambling on sports. No other place in U.S. does legally. I don’t know why this precludes a team from operating there but that’s the preface of the argument. It is completly hypocritcal when the NFL is pursuing a full slate of games for London.

  38. I’ve been saying it for years. The point spread and Las Vegas have made the NFL what it is today. It’s time for the city to have a team.

  39. They would never, ever put a franchise there. Its a poorly veiled attempt at extortion. The truth is the raiders can’t go to San Antonio or Vegas, and everyone knows it. If you plan extortion, it has to at least be conceivable

  40. what can they say or do….after Mark Davis was disrespected at the vote over Los Angeles, he will just move the team to Las Vegas…..can the NFL say anything about gambling after they were the ones behind fan duel/draft kings illegal gambling. At least in Las Vegas gambling is legal. At the end of the day Mark Davis hooking up with Sheldon Adelson and all his billions was brilliant. Good luck to the nfl trying to stop somebody who is that well connected with politicians.

    At the end of the day, would there be a better city for the Super Bowl?

  41. The NFL and Vegas are a perfect match. It would be the biggest road game destination for the entire league. Fans would be hoping to see a Vegas game on their teams schedule.

  42. Al Loved Vegas
    Mark loves vegas and move in a minute
    mark promised his Dad that he would get the stadium Al was never able to get
    Oakland is not producing – guess where the conversation is….vegas

  43. The idea for a stadium has arisen for the past 30 years. It never goes anywhere bc the public will not finance or partner to build a stadium. Adelson could certainly afford to build his own stadium or 20 of them for that matter. The local community would support an NFL team. I have doubt any other major league franchise can say the same.

    Also, the mob doesn’t run Vegas any longer and hasn’t for decades. Why do you think comps are so hard to come by nowadays? Of course, you could call the banking interests and Fortune 500 companies who do own the casinos a bigger threat, but the idea Vegas is somehow “shady” is uninformed at best.

    Finally, having legalized sports betting keeps the lines honest and transparent. The instances of fixing have all been noticed and commenced by information authorities received from Vegas lines makers.

  44. State of the Art 1 Billion dollar stadium……..didn’t Goodell just say that the St. Louis 1.1 Billion dollar stadium was “inadequate”?

  45. Can you imagine the number of visiting fans that would attend NFL games in Vegas? The Raiders would probably only have to sell 30,000 season tickets. Then again, there probably wouldn’t be much of a home filed advantage.

  46. flannlv says:
    Jan 29, 2016 1:54 PM

    Also, the mob doesn’t run Vegas any longer and hasn’t for decades.

    So the NFL would be the new muscle in town? That’s even worse.

    Kensil, remember to dig the hole before you take Brady out into the desert.

  47. The betting line is out.

    The odds are 5 to 1 that Vegas gets a team.

    The over/under is the year 2090 before Vegas gets a team.

  48. Vegas is the place for the Raiders.

    Get it done.

    2 teams in L.A. County, and the Raiders can partake in the L.A. market without being in it.

  49. the raiders will move to vegas . no way they move to san antonio or stay in oakland to pay high california taxes. vegas has no state income tax just like san antonio but it is the best location available. vegas is the LA market with out the hassles the taxes and fair weather fans. vegas is loaded with raider fans. besides that raider fans from oakland and LA can fly in for the weekend to see the raiders play. its a no brainer deal for mark davis to make. once the raiders move to vegas they will dominate the LA market for sure and have a real chance to dominate pro football again for years to come because every top free agent will want to wear silver and black. book it !

  50. The NFL would rather have an owner who didn’t look like Lloyd Christmas and obviously would rather have an owner who would be able to maximize the marketing opportunities that lay before them

    I am very sure we can all hear Mark Davis saying “So you’re saying there’s a chance”

  51. i’ve been saying it for years, and kept hearing i was crazy…

    radrntn says:
    Oct 11, 2011 11:38 AM
    here’s one for you Mark Davis moves the team to his town………Las Vegas Raiders

    4 11
    Report comment

  52. The Raiders should really move to Portland, Oregon!!!!
    That is by far the best place for the Raiders to move to and make a huge impact both in profits and in the amount of hardcore fans that would be created!!!

    Plus Portland makes the most sense for the Raiders to play there with the city’s history of shanghai kidnappings turning men into pirates and such.

    The Oregon Raiders has a great ring to it.

    i bet if the Raiders would move to Portland, Oregon the rivalry game against seattle would be very very heated.




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