Shad Khan: I’m buying Wembley to keep the Jaguars stable in both London and Jacksonville

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Jaguars owner Shad Khan has confirmed he is buying Wembley Stadium, England’s premier soccer field and the home of many NFL international games. But he’s positioning the move not as an attempt to take the Jaguars to London, but as an attempt to strengthen the franchise.

“The Jaguars have played regular season home games at Wembley Stadium in each of the past five NFL seasons and will continue to do so at least through the 2020 season,” Khan said in a statement. “The games the Jaguars play at Wembley are essential to the financial stability of the Jaguars in Jacksonville, which is one of the smallest markets in the NFL. If my ownership interests were to include Wembley Stadium, it would protect the Jaguars’ position in London at a time when other NFL teams are understandably becoming more interested in this great city. And the stronger the Jaguars are in London, the more stable and promising the Jaguars’ future will be in Jacksonville.”

Realistically, however, if Khan finds that playing games in London is more profitable than playing games in Jacksonville, how long will he play just one game a year in London? How soon until it’s two home games in London? Or four? Or all eight?

Those are concerns that some Jacksonville fans will have no matter how much Khan insists he’s dedicated to remaining in the city. Khan is making a big investment in London, which will remain the Jaguars’ second home. And may some day become the Jaguars’ first home.

90 responses to “Shad Khan: I’m buying Wembley to keep the Jaguars stable in both London and Jacksonville

  1. “Khan is making a big investment in London, which will remain the Jaguars’ second home.”

    Guess what? Khan is making big investments in Jacksonville too.

  2. London is one of those places you go to once for like 5 days and it’s like…meh… it’s ok. It’s too busy and getting worse and worse each year for the amounts of people and prices of things.

  3. Interesting. 7pm uk game is 1pm est. A permanent move could work! Imagine outfitting a couple of planes to comfortably carry the team back and forth across the ocean. Take that pain point out and it seems more reasonable.

  4. Wow!! I don’t know whether to say, 1) He’s a genius 2) That’s the most ridiculous thing I’ve ever heard 3) He is just so rich, that he needs another play toy ??

  5. They tried to get a team in Canada but Buffalonians had other ideas, I doubt the JAX fans know they even have a team.

  6. So a pro sports owner that actually wants to spend his own money on a stadium? I could see the Jags moving some day, but that day is still a long ways off and the team is actually going to be pretty solid for awhile so I would still be happy if I were a Jags fan. From day one Khan has really said all the right things and is willing to do anything to get a winning team on the field.

  7. If you think Khan is not hedging his bet for a permanent move to London….well, there is a bridge for sale over there Too ! ..Also !

  8. There is no logistical reason a team in London would work. It would be a terrible disadvantage to any team that has to play there and a terrible disadvantage to the Jags for any away game. Trying to force a square peg in a round hole will have expected results.
    The financial stability Khan is talking about is his bottom line. More jersey sales, more advertising – more money.

  9. That’s smart. He’s trying to become the hometown team for 2 cities. I don’t think they would ever move to London permanently. I think it would be too hard and expensive for all of the travel the team would have to do. A lot of free agents wouldn’t even consider signing with them because they wouldn’t want to move there.

  10. Good job handicapping your team for the future. No good free agent players (note that I said “good”) will want to sign a long term deal with the team now. Players do not want to fly across the big pond that often! If a player has various offers on the table, Jacksonville will be the last team they pick simply because they don’t want to be stuck if and when Khan decides to move the team to London.

  11. There will be no team in London. The logistics and several issues with player salaries like tax would make it impossible. They will just continue to play 1 game a year there with some off season promotion work. It’s a solid plan and the Jags and their fans should be happy with that arrangement as everyone benefits.

  12. Mr. Khan has not lied to any of us Jaguar fans yet. We now trust him and will continue to do so- what HE says matters, not media or fan speculation.

  13. Titans fan here and I hate the Jags but I have to admit I think this guy is awesome. Talk about an owner. Supports his team, community, efforts, and is out doing really bad axe BIG owner type stuff like buying Wembley Stadium. Wembley. LOL those idiots on the west coast want tax breaks to put in a lemonade stand.

    Anyway good on ya Shad. See ya Thursday night (as per the last 10 years and eternity to come).

  14. Phew, it had been a while without someone speculating the Jags moving to London. I had thought sports press had given that up. Glad to see they are still stuck in their ways.

    They aren’t going anywhere.

  15. This is more than just about football. Wembley is a cash cow. The money generated by more than just US Football games (i.e. concerts, Soccer…etc) will allow Khan to pump money back into Jacksonville and the Jaguars which has been his vision since buying the team.

  16. Good for him and good for the Jags.

    The investments he is making in Jacksonville do not signal a move of the team.

  17. “And the stronger the Jaguars are in London, the more stable and promising the Jaguars’ future will be in Jacksonville.”

    That absolutely makes no sense…….sorry Jaxs fans looks like the future of your team staying state side is tranisitioning…..

  18. As a Jags fan I have a slight twinge of concern. However the fact that he is spearheading a multi-billion dollar project to basically renovate downtown Jacksonville I’m not overly concerned.

  19. Hearing how this is essential for the “financial stability” of the Jaguars, in one of the “smallest markets in the NFL” makes my stomach turn as I think back to the’93 expansion. Cleveland, Tagliabue is whom you should despise, not Art Modell.

  20. Please move the NFL team operating in Jacksonville out of a market that cannot support them financially. If a domestic market is not available, remove the team from the league. More is not always better.

  21. “And may some day become the Jaguars’ first home.”

    Here we go… Tarps are all off and season tickets sold out, but the Jags are still moving.

  22. From stockboy to billionaire, in the same field. I think I will give him the benefit of the doubt for his financial reasons. It’s a business, as we get to be reminded every single day…

  23. So the NFL can afford to buy billion dollar stadiums overseas but they want to extort the taxpayers here for them.

    The disgusting greed of the NFL should not be rewarded in this fashion. No city in the US should ever give a single dime towards an NFL stadium again.

  24. Yikes! I’d be very nervous if I’m a Jag fan in J-ville. I went to the Vikes game there in 2016 and there were at least 20k Vikes fans there. I, and so many others, looked at it as a great destination for a late season away game and added the family vacation in the mix. They will never be a die-hard FB city like a KC, GB, Buff. By the time they move to London full-time the NFL will be the NFFL, National Flag FB league anyway.

  25. Wembley Stadium hosts many many events throughout the year, including the NFL. Wembley Stadiums is owned (or was) by the English Soccer Federation (Football Association). Makes sense to unload since it’s probably not profitable for them and it’s not in their interests to own a stadium.

  26. That’s money. Put your conspiracy theories aside, the man just invested in probably the most storied venue in the region and I’m sure that’ll increase the partnership between London and the NFL not to mention revenue into his pockets.

  27. Just so you know- out of the 32 NFL teams the Jaguars were 21st in average home attendance and 18th overall. This year, with season tickets sold out, they will likely be in the 14-16 range. There are thousands of people moving to Florida..there’s no reason to move the franchise. All you experts need to consider the facts.

    Whoever moves to London or plays in London will have to pay rent to the Jaguars owner and he will continue to build around Everbank Stadium in Jacksonville, creating the greatest sports venue in America.

    Keep laughing- we have swimming pools in the stadium, an attached outdoor amphitheater for concerts, the best lockerroom facilities for our players, easy access, great stadium food, great weather and an AFC Championship Game level team.

  28. Suggesting a London-based team displays a clear lack of understanding on the differences in taxation between UK and US.

    If a team were to be successful in London it would require a 10-15% higher Salary Cap in order for players to be equally well off. And that does even include the premium needed for living that far away from your family and friends for 6 months a year.

  29. “Whoever moves to London or plays in London will have to pay rent to the Jaguars owner”

    Not necessarily. If a team moves, they could go into the stadium being built for the Tottenham Spurs, which got some financing from the NFL and is set to host at least two games there. Given that Wembley is very important to European football (soccer), and the new stadium is being built with the NFL’s input, it’s more likely that stadium would get looked at for increased NFL use or hosting a team than trying to deal with convincing the FA that Wembley’s primary focus should be changed to American football.

  30. skoobyfl says:
    April 26, 2018 at 9:10 am
    They tried to get a team in Canada but Buffalonians had other ideas, I doubt the JAX fans know they even have a team.
    *********************************************************************
    Ah, no. The NFL assumed Torontonians were Bills fans and that’s clearly not the case. The 10’s of thousands of Canadians that go to Bills games every week are NOT from the Toronto area, they’re from South Western Ontario.

    Nice try though.

  31. People who don’t live here have no idea what is going on.. There will always be fans from other teams at our games since that is the nature of Florida with so many having fled here to escape high taxation and bad weather… but they still remain fans of their old team. Jags fans for 2018 have scooped up season tickets ( frankly… I suspect so have many ticket brokers) and the place will be full but seating about 8K less than when it opened due to the building of newer venues inside the stadium and right sizing things like the club areas. But they are passing through ticket price increases to make them more competitive money wise with larger towns. And there won’t be quite as many visiting fans though I suspect many fans will resell their tickets due to the sky high pricing on games vs New England and Pittsburgh. If the team performs like last year, those new season ticket buyers will start to lock in.. As was reported last week during the State of Franchise message, the London games bring extra revenue and notice to Jacksonville. I kinda doubt they’ll add any more home games in London because of the investments in the local stadium. Everbank ( soon to be TIAA Bank) Field is now one of the oldest stadiums in the NFL and it’s only 23 years old. However, walking in, you wouldn’t notice since it has been maintained and upgraded for a fraction of the cost other cities have spent building new venues.

  32. Some of you seem to lack a certain level of business acumen. What he’s saying is, he wants to remain in Jacksonville. To remain in Jacksonville he needs to maintain the success they’ve had playing the London game annually. Other teams are vying for the spot to play in London. Those teams might be willing to pay more money and shut the Jaguars out of London. If he has a controlling interest in Wembley, he gets say in who plays the London game. Obviously that means the Jaguars will get first dibs on the London game. For a small market team to compete against the rest of the league on that, they cannot afford to allow other teams to drive up the price or outbid them. This shows long term strategic planning by the Jaguars and honestly I’m impressed with Khan. For Jaguars fans, it looks like you have good leadership for once.

    For anyone thinking that the Jaguars are moving to London, I wouldn’t hold my breath. Until the league can field teams in Mexico and elsewhere, a full time team in London doesn’t work for the NFL. A new set of scheduling rules would need to be employed and would only make sense if there were multiple international franchises. Now, 20 or 30 years from now?…

  33. LOL!

    I have seen a lot of terrible liars before, but this one is right at the top.

    Yes, you’re going to pay rent on 2 stadiums at once as other franchises (NY and LA) flock to share 1.

    Sure! I have a bridge to sell you, too, Kahn.

  34. nknielsen says:
    April 26, 2018 at 10:44 am
    Suggesting a London-based team displays a clear lack of understanding on the differences in taxation between UK and US.

    If a team were to be successful in London it would require a 10-15% higher Salary Cap in order for players to be equally well off. And that does even include the premium needed for living that far away from your family and friends for 6 months a year.

    0 1 Rate This

    ———————

    Not if Goodell’s Article 46 and his crafty lawyers find a way to keep Jax as the franchise registered in Florida, but playing in London.

    The major issue for any team established overseas in this greedy expansion of theirs will be selling kids from cities and poor communities to WANT to live in a foreign country, be further away from family and even raise kids in a totally new world. I a am not saying London is India, but still.

  35. East coast to London is only about 40 minutes more in the air than East coast to LAX. If Khan bought 2 Concord-like planes, the time from NY to London (in 1996) was < 3 hours. Now, If something could go like, 80% the speed of the Concord, its 4ish hours from NY to London. Currently its 6.5 hours from NY to LAX and just a hair over 7 hours from NY to London. Its definitely doable.

  36. Yea right “Khan finds that playing games in London is more profitable than playing games in Jacksonville, how long will he play just one game a year in London?”

    until the Jags start to suck again and no team will want to travel that far to play a bottom ranked team … even the Browns …. Concerned Browns Fan

  37. joetoronto says:

    April 26, 2018 at 10:54 am

    skoobyfl says:
    April 26, 2018 at 9:10 am
    They tried to get a team in Canada but Buffalonians had other ideas, I doubt the JAX fans know they even have a team.
    *********************************************************************
    Ah, no. The NFL assumed Torontonians were Bills fans and that’s clearly not the case. The 10’s of thousands of Canadians that go to Bills games every week are NOT from the Toronto area, they’re from South Western Ontario.

    Nice try though.
    _________________________________________________________________________________
    And you still have no team. Nice try though.

  38. In 1993, St Louis and Baltimore were supposed to get expansion franchises but the greedy owners took money from Jacksonville and Carolina screwing two cities who had lost teams. So St Louis stole the Rams from LA and Baltimore stole the Browns from Cleveland. So if the Jags move, good..they are the cause of the 1990’s relocation mess, same with Carolina, move them too. One team to San Diego and the Other to St Louis, fix all the messes.

  39. minnesotablizzard says:
    April 26, 2018 at 9:06 am
    London is one of those places you go to once for like 5 days and it’s like…meh… it’s ok. It’s too busy and getting worse and worse each year for the amounts of people and prices of things.

    Wow, you heard it here first, folks. Don’t move to London. This guy doesn’t like it.

  40. Khan is smart.

    First, as the owner of Wembley, he’ll get revenue from ANY NFL game played there not just the Jags.
    So he just picked up revenue for 3 additional “Home” games as a stadium owner, in addition to the one he’ll get as a team owner.

    Second, London games aren’t about geographic locations as much as they are the location on the all too profitable TV landscape.
    Afternoon timeslots are full already, but the Sunday 10 am timeslot is empty, and that more ad dollars and bigger TV contracts.

    Khan is a businessman and has built a huge empire, and also done well building a nice following and yes a playoff caliber team.
    He’s invested deeply into the city of Jacksonville, including $20 million in stadium renovations in 2013,

    Interesting point though: about $65 million of renovations are going on at the newly named TIAA Field this offseason.
    Khan has no money involved.

  41. tylawspick6 says:
    April 26, 2018 at 11:11 am
    nknielsen says:
    April 26, 2018 at 10:44 am
    Suggesting a London-based team displays a clear lack of understanding on the differences in taxation between UK and US.

    If a team were to be successful in London it would require a 10-15% higher Salary Cap in order for players to be equally well off. And that does even include the premium needed for living that far away from your family and friends for 6 months a year.

    0 1 Rate This

    ———————

    Not if Goodell’s Article 46 and his crafty lawyers find a way to keep Jax as the franchise registered in Florida, but playing in London.

    The major issue for any team established overseas in this greedy expansion of theirs will be selling kids from cities and poor communities to WANT to live in a foreign country, be further away from family and even raise kids in a totally new world. I a am not saying London is India, but still.

    —————————

    Doesn’t matter were the team is registered – that only relates to company profits. The employees will qualify as residents and will therefore need to pay taxes. Technically they would be tax-registered in both UK and US, but with offsetting mechanism for the majority amount paid.

  42. Sure. And remember how all the owners said ratings were down because of cable cutting, not rich players insulting the flag? Thanks to that leaked NY Times info on their 3 hour panic meeting we know it’s what we always said.

  43. so let me get this straight…. in england, an NFL owner has the ablitly to buy a stadium. Said owner does so knowing that the cost of buying will be covered with the profits. of course his football team only plays 1 game a year there. But in America, Owners need the help of Tax dollars in order to get a stadium?? something seems off here.

  44. HUGE Jags fan here. Just last week, it was announced that Kahn is investing $2,500,000,000 (yes, 2.5 BILLION dollars) into “Lot J” and surrounding areas of the stadium…Building an entertainment district, hotels, etc…If this is done, the Jags stay. If there’s a delay of some type on their parts, I think the Jags go.

    So basically, I hope they break ground VERY SOON!!!

  45. jake6879 says:
    April 26, 2018 at 11:06 am
    Some of you seem to lack a certain level of business acumen. What he’s saying is, he wants to remain in Jacksonville. To remain in Jacksonville he needs to maintain the success they’ve had playing the London game annually. Other teams are vying for the spot to play in London. Those teams might be willing to pay more money and shut the Jaguars out of London. If he has a controlling interest in Wembley, he gets say in who plays the London game. Obviously that means the Jaguars will get first dibs on the London game. For a small market team to compete against the rest of the league on that, they cannot afford to allow other teams to drive up the price or outbid them. This shows long term strategic planning by the Jaguars and honestly I’m impressed with Khan. For Jaguars fans, it looks like you have good leadership for once.

    For anyone thinking that the Jaguars are moving to London, I wouldn’t hold my breath. Until the league can field teams in Mexico and elsewhere, a full time team in London doesn’t work for the NFL. A new set of scheduling rules would need to be employed and would only make sense if there were multiple international franchises. Now, 20 or 30 years from now?…

    10 3 Rate This

    ———————

    Look in the mirror if you want bad business acumen. You are ignoring the level of greed and ego tied to what the owners want in terms of greater TV revenue.

    They think that if a team is close to a market, they not only may do better in a city like London over Jax on population size alone, but also get MORE eyeballs and more fantasy football people watching games.

    You’d have to be a moron to pretend Jacksonville for ratings trounces London, the latter one of the world’s most populous cities.

    They don’t care if their experiment fails. They see it as worth trying (again), because they maxed out/saturated the N. American market.

    They have nowhere else to grow AND with CTE rising, the truth is, they need humans to invest in for other parts of the world to play this sport.

  46. If there was ever a good situation for a split home games team….or even a full blown move, this is it. Do it if you are gonna do it. 3 teams in Florida is too many anyways~

  47. Another NFL Team following the money; Stan Kroenke told St Louis that he wasn’t moving, then that he was, Dean Sp-Anus told San Diego he was working on a new stadium in San Diego, and then he heard the words “Free Rent!”

    So long, Jacksonville, at least St Louis and San Diego have baseball teams

  48. Hope he brings the Michael Jackson statue that he mothballed at Craven Cottage, (home of Fulham FC, which Khan also owns), and erects it in front of Wembley, (pun intended). Also keep this in mind, Jacksonville fans. The year after he purchased Fulham, they were relegated back into the Championship, (2nd division in English Football), and haven’t made it back since.

  49. Jax and London equally sharing the home dates at some point would cut in half the logistics problems of having a team based only in London playing 8 home games.

    There could instead be a 4 game home stand in London, near midseason, with the teams traveling there having byes after, then all other games in the US (4 in Jacksonville, 8 at the opponents sites)

  50. jman967 says:
    There is no logistical reason a team in London would work. It would be a terrible disadvantage to any team that has to play there and a terrible disadvantage to the Jags for any away game. Trying to force a square peg in a round hole will have expected results.
    The financial stability Khan is talking about is his bottom line. More jersey sales, more advertising – more money.

    —–
    Disadvantages… smishadvantages. Its all about the money.

    A move like this will wreck the Jags, who would have to travel to at least 8 games in the US. Teams that face the Jags will only have to attend one UK game per regular season.

  51. I thought he has just put an offer in, I don’t think it’s a done deal at the moment. I also think the Football Association who owns the stadium is gauging the public response to this also, and from what I gather it hasn’t gone down to well, but as we all know, who really cares what the fans think when there’s money at stake. Whether us fans like it or not the sporting landscape is changing regarding major sports around the world. Youngsters probably don’t see what all the fuss is about it’s just us oldies.

  52. Anyone who thinks the Jaguars would permanently move to London has no clue of how an NFL team functions, the current state of the Jaguars, or the massive amount of investment Khan has poured into the local area.

  53. It was less than a year ago when NFL international committee chairman Clark Hunt said the goal was to have a team in London by 2022. And then it was either Kraft or Jones who stated the same thing not too long ago. Its going to happen. It may go down in flames but they are hell bent on making it happen.

  54. weepingjebus says:
    April 26, 2018 at 11:54 am
    Sure. And remember how all the owners said ratings were down because of cable cutting, not rich players insulting the flag? Thanks to that leaked NY Times info on their 3 hour panic meeting we know it’s what we always said.
    ————————————————–

    There is no evidence that the NFL’s ratings decline last year was due to the flag protests. (And what do player salaries have to do with it?) The NFL was down 5% but the major networks were down an average of 8%. The marketplace is changing. You can’t point to the decline and simply say it was because of the protests.

  55. Goodell (meaning the owners) has said the goal is to grow the NFL to a $25 billion business by 2025. That’s roughly double what it is now. In order to do that they need to expand the league’s international draw. Does that mean a team in London? I don’t know if that’s the logical first step. Canada? Mexico? Who knows. But they’ve got to get it somewhere.

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