With the Raiders off to Las Vegas, and the Rams and Chargers about to move into their new shared space in Los Angeles, the league’s stockpile of cities to use as leverage for new stadium deals has dwindled.
And if Toronto wants to become one, they better be ready to do some construction.
Commissioner Roger Goodell said during his annual press conference that he was a fan of Toronto as a city, but pointed out an important hurdle before a team might consider a home there.
“It certainly could be a great city for an NFL team,” he said of Toronto. “A stadium up to NFL standards is going to be an important element.”
The Rogers Centre has hosted NFL games before, most recently a Bills-Falcons game in 2013, when Buffalo was playing a series of annual games there.
But the building, which primarily hosts baseball’s Blue Jays and the CFL’s Argonauts, was opened in 1989, and the NFL won’t be looking to move into a fixer-upper.
With a brand new football-ready stadium opened in London (Tottenham Hotspur’s new building hosted its first games this year), and no apparent teams itching to move (that we know of), Toronto has some work to do if they want to get in line to be used.