Report: Stan Kroenke offered $100 million to settle the Rams relocation case

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Rams owner Stan Kroenke is willing to dig deep in an effort to resolve the St. Louis relocation litigation. But perhaps not deep enough.

According to A.J. Perez of FrontOfficeSports.com, Kroenke has offered $100 million to settle the case. The offer reportedly was “rebuffed.”

The specific context of that offer isn’t known. If, for example, the plaintiffs demanded $1 billion and Kroenke offered $100 million in response, it likely means that further negotiation could resolve the case in the range of $500 million. If, in contrast, the plaintiffs started at $200 million, Kroenke began at $10 million, further negotiation resulted in a bottom-line offer from Kroenke of $100 million, and the plaintiffs said no, the process could be over.

The deadline-driven nature of the NFL extends to other industries, including civil litigation. If one side moves to its bottom-line position in advance of a relevant drop-dead date, that side inevitably will be pressured to give even more when the true deadline arrives.

So when is the deadline for this specific battle? Plenty of cases are settled on the eve of trial or, literally, on the courthouse steps. But with trial due to commence on January 10, that’s a lot of wasted time and effort over the holidays as the lawyers grind away at getting ready (and full-blown preparation for a lengthy and complex trial becomes an every-waking-moment effort for multiple weeks) for presentations of argument and evidence that may never happen.

The best way to settle any civil case is to hire a competent neutral lawyer (preferably, a retired judge) to preside over negotiations. The mediator, during private sessions with each side of the case, can speak candidly about the weaknesses, and every case has them. The plaintiffs need to hear about their weaknesses so that they’ll take less. The NFL, which typically doesn’t like to listen to anyone, needs to hear about its weaknesses so that it will pay more.

Complicating the situation from the league’s perspective is Kroenke’s apparent intention to bail on the terms of his indemnity agreement. For mediation purposes, there’s tangible financial value that the rest of the league can bring to the table as part of a global settlement that results in money being paid by Kroenke and then by the league.

Or maybe there should be two mediations, one aimed at getting the league on the same page about where the money will come from to resolve the lawsuit and then a mediation aimed at resolving the lawsuit.

Often in litigation, egos and personalities and real or feigned righteousness can prevent efforts to reach an outcome that neither side will love but with which each side can live. The real question for the NFL and St. Louis at this point is whether the spirit of the looming holiday season can persuade them to beat their swords into an acceptable settlement.

44 responses to “Report: Stan Kroenke offered $100 million to settle the Rams relocation case

  1. No way the NFL let’s this go to trial. I doubt they will give St. Louis $1 billion, but I would put $20 on that happening before I would put $20 on this going to a full fledge trial.

  2. So what St Louis is saying here by turning down $100M is that NFL teams DO bring TONS of money into their municipality and community aside from direct revenue to the team and owner.

    Which completely justifies why these stadiums should be partially funded by the localities that benefit from receiving the riches these organizations bring to a community that an owner will never see.

  3. My guess is it will eventually be a mix of $ and something just short of a promise from the NFL for an expansion team in StL.

  4. St. Louis wants the money they lost in revenue but doesn’t want to be responsible to partially cover the cost of this stadium that brings them in this money. Strange concept.

  5. If they had accepted that, it just means any team can break their agreements with their city and move. Just add .1 billion to the cost.

  6. Good luck St. Louis.
    The NFL (and all major sports leagues) are the furthest things from free markets; anyone of us can open an airline if we can raise the capital and meet the regulations but we can’t open an NFL franchise (saying we can open another league is an ignorant argument on so many levels). The NFL (and similar) is about the furthest thing from a free market. This is all well protected by outdated laws kept in place by those in power; those that control the money and those that control the laws (Congress) who simply scratch one another’s backs. This has led to the insane valuations of franchises and the literal societal sickness in thinking nothing of playing someone $40M for playing with a freaking ball while we can’t figure out how to properly pay first responders, police, fire, health services, teachers, etc. It’s clinically insane.
    The ONLY leverage the average citizen has left is to hold NFL franchises fully accountable to their civic commitments and severely punish them if they’re broken. Kronke is going to make untold billions being in LA, so even a billion or two is nothing but a minor speed bump. Make him pay St.Louis. Good luck.

  7. St. Louis counter offer They want a new expansion team…a new stadium….the #1 pick in the draft…..and a player to be named later. (Probably Tom Brady).

  8. So why does he owe them anything? Has it been established that he is in breach of a contract? Not saying that he hasn’t, but would like to know. Seems all postings are about what it would take to make the matter go away without any discussion of the terms that were violated.

  9. St. Louis isn’t going to settle for 10% of what it’s seeking. St. Louis is going to win and they’re going to win big.

  10. Kroenke low ball offer of $100 million is essentially admitting the NFL will lose in court for cheating. Implications are big for them since relocation rules were created in the 1980s to stave off anti-trust charges. St. Louis counter offer was,”see you in court”. Good for them.

  11. touchback6 says:
    November 11, 2021 at 9:50 am
    If they had accepted that, it just means any team can break their agreements with their city and move. Just add .1 billion to the cost.
    ________________

    The Rams did not break their contract with St. Louis. To the contrary, the City breached the contract by failing to maintain the Edward Jones dome as a first class facility as required by the agreement.

  12. I think St Louis is claiming they had a stadium deal w/ the Rams but Kroenke pulled out after it became apparent that Jones/Richardson/Kraft would rally enough owners to approve his move to LA. If that deal was in any way stated in writing, then Kroenke & The Shield are liable for damages.

  13. So what St Louis is saying here by turning down $100M is that NFL teams DO bring TONS of money into their municipality and community aside from direct revenue to the team and owner.

    Which completely justifies why these stadiums should be partially funded by the localities that benefit from receiving the riches these organizations bring to a community that an owner will never see.
    ==========

    Hasn’t played out well in the past.

    Ask the USFL owners what kind of damages they received..

  14. Question for everyone though. Everyone always claims NFL teams do not bring in much revenue to a local team/state. How is that remotely true if they claim damages dont even come close to 100m ? They refused to update the current stadium even though they were contractually obligated to and refused to help fund a new one with this very claim by local politicians now they say they have lost 1b in revenue from the team leaving ?

  15. txdr says:
    November 11, 2021 at 9:52 am
    This has led to the insane valuations of franchises and the literal societal sickness in thinking nothing of playing someone $40M for playing with a freaking ball while we can’t figure out how to properly pay first responders, police, fire, health services, teachers, etc. It’s clinically insane.
    The ONLY leverage the average citizen has left is to hold NFL franchises fully accountable to their civic commitments and severely punish them if they’re broken.
    ______________

    A $40 million player salary has no effect on what pay police, fire, teachers, etc. receive. The teams have no civic commitments other than those that they choose to take on. The teams certainly have no commitment to augment the salaries of first responders.

    Your anger is misplaced. If you are really concerned about the salaries for first responders and teachers you should be petitioning your local government and school board, not complaining about the NFL.

  16. ncfloyd says:
    November 11, 2021 at 9:58 am
    So why does he owe them anything? Has it been established that he is in breach of a contract? Not saying that he hasn’t, but would like to know. Seems all postings are about what it would take to make the matter go away without any discussion of the terms that were violated.

    ==========================================================================================

    Things went bad in pre-trial for the Kroenke and the NFL. It seems probable they can prove that the Rams and NFL’s efforts to keep the team in St. Louis was in bad faith.

    There is no way the NFL or Kroenke want to have to answer anything under oath in a trial and St. Louis knows this.

    I doubt anything short of an expansion team is going to satisfy them.

  17. “Plenty of cases are settled on the eve of trial or, literally, on the courthouse steps. ”

    Especially ones where NFL owner billionaires could be forced to testify about how much wealth they really have and generate.

    If that becomes public knowledge they many never get another dime of public money anywhere to build their palaces

  18. txdr says:
    November 11, 2021 at 9:52 am

    This has led to the insane valuations of franchises and the literal societal sickness in thinking nothing of playing someone $40M for playing with a freaking ball while we can’t figure out how to properly pay first responders, police, fire, health services, teachers, etc. It’s clinically insane.

    ——————————————————————————-

    I’ve never understood the comparison people make with highly paid athletes to teachers, etc. Society isn’t paying NFL QB’s, the teams are. In her prime earning years, Tom Brady’s wife was making way more money than he ever well. I’ve never heard anyone complain about that or compare her earnings to teachers. Scarlett Johansson was paid a $15 million salary for one movie and then sued Disney because they cheated her out of her additional cut of the profits. No one complained about that (not saying they should, it probably was a legitimate case). Judge Judy makes more than any NFL player at $47 million a year. No one seems to have an issue with that.

  19. Dear Stan and the NFL,

    Here’s what we want. You all to give us an expansion team that will have permanent ties to St. Louis (no more relocation teams) AND for you all to fund our new stadium on your dime.

    Sincerely,

    The St. Louis Stallions

  20. the fact that the league charged their owners 650 million to relocate tells you all you need to know.

  21. jonathankrobinson424 says:
    November 11, 2021 at 9:54 am
    St. Louis counter offer They want a new expansion team…a new stadium….the #1 pick in the draft…..and a player to be named later. (Probably Tom Brady).

    This was funny.

  22. The court(s) will force the NFL to expand?

    Thats one of the most obnoxious things I’ve ever read.

  23. Just to put my tin foil hat on for a sec: suppose any of those WFT emails they refuse to release deal with this? And the league doesn’t want them out before trial?

    Tin foil hat off…

  24. If that becomes public knowledge they many never get another dime of public money anywhere to build their palaces
    ==========

    Thanks to the Packers, it is public knowledge how much dough the NFL generates.

    Sadly, cities line up and pitch in anyway.

  25. They want a football team and someone to build the stadium to put one in. Sounds like 4 billion is needed to me.

  26. gibson45 says:
    November 11, 2021 at 10:11 am
    touchback6 says:
    November 11, 2021 at 9:50 am
    If they had accepted that, it just means any team can break their agreements with their city and move. Just add .1 billion to the cost.
    ________________

    The Rams did not break their contract with St. Louis. To the contrary, the City breached the contract by failing to maintain the Edward Jones dome as a first class facility as required by the agreement.
    ———————————————————————————————-
    This false narrative is always brought up in every story about this issue . The city DID NOT BREAK THE LEASE . Kroenke attempted to make the case that’s why he broke the lease and moved to LA but obviously the MULTIPLE COURT CASES that both Kroenke and the league has lost proved it’s a bogus claim . Don’t think anybody reasonable would believe the city breached the contract when the NFL and Kroenke are willing to offer a $100M as a settlement to make them go away . Kroenke and the NFL have finally run into a situation that their clout , arrogance and disregard for fair business practices didn’t allow them to get away without being forced to pay for their wrongdoing . .

  27. shurmanblog says:
    November 11, 2021 at 1:10 pm
    gibson45 says:
    November 11, 2021 at 10:11 am
    The Rams did not break their contract with St. Louis. To the contrary, the City breached the contract by failing to maintain the Edward Jones dome as a first class facility as required by the agreement.
    ———————————————————————————————-
    This false narrative is always brought up in every story about this issue . The city DID NOT BREAK THE LEASE . Kroenke attempted to make the case that’s why he broke the lease and moved to LA but obviously the MULTIPLE COURT CASES that both Kroenke and the league has lost proved it’s a bogus claim . Don’t think anybody reasonable would believe the city breached the contract when the NFL and Kroenke are willing to offer a $100M as a settlement to make them go away .
    _______________

    Are you claiming that the City did maintain the Edward Jones dome per their contractual requirement?

    Kroenke and the league have not lost multiple court cases. This is the only case involving this matter and there has yet to be a winner or loser.

    Kroenke’s alleged settlement offer, assuming that he actually made one, has nothing to do with which party breached the contract. Civil litigants who are not at fault frequently make settlement offers to avoid the cost of litigation and/or the risk of an erroneous verdict.

  28. gibson45 says:
    November 11, 2021 at 10:11 am

    The Rams did not break their contract with St. Louis. To the contrary, the City breached the contract by failing to maintain the Edward Jones dome as a first class facility as required by the agreement.
    ———————

    You are correct, the Rams opted out of their lease by using a clause that allowed them to do so if the dome wasn’t one of the top stadiums in the league. Having been built in 1993, it was obsolete by 2000.

    The problem arises from the fact that the NFL has guidelines for relocation and those guidelines are that you have to exhaust all avenues for getting a new stadium in your market before you can leave. You’re not allowed to just pack up and leave because another market is more lucrative.

    Kroenke did NOT negotiate with St. Louis in good faith. St. Louis and Missouri government were both working on a stadium deal and Kroenke wanted nothing to do with it. IIRC, Kroenke bought the land that the new stadium is sitting on in Inglewood shortly before St. Louis leaders revealed their plan, and Kroenke denied that the land was going to be used for a stadium.

    Because the league broke their bylaws in allowing the Rams to leave, St. Louis is entitled to money they would have earned, money they spent, and will get a percentage based on how much the teams value increased.

    Like it or not, the NFL has finally been put into a corner. They’d be best to cut their losses, offer St. Louis an expansion, build them a new stadium, and training facility, as well as paying off the remaining money owed on the dome, and calling it a day.

    St. Louis will win multiple billion in court, but more importantly, the NFL is going to have to open up their correspondence (emails, messages, etc) and their books.

  29. This will end with the NFL promising St. Louis the next expansion franchise (assuming somebody can meet the franchise fee price), and if they’re smart any agreement will include the right for the next franchise to leave without penalty after a decade. St. Louis has proven not to be a good football town. Just ask the Cardinals. Yes – the Cards and Rams left for greener pastures (and in the case of the Rams, MUCH greener pastures), but the bottom line is the St. Louis base didn’t provide the level of support to make competing for a championship viable.

  30. kemp13 says:
    November 11, 2021 at 2:05 pm
    This will end with the NFL promising St. Louis the next expansion franchise (assuming somebody can meet the franchise fee price), and if they’re smart any agreement will include the right for the next franchise to leave without penalty after a decade. St. Louis has proven not to be a good football town. Just ask the Cardinals. Yes – the Cards and Rams left for greener pastures (and in the case of the Rams, MUCH greener pastures), but the bottom line is the St. Louis base didn’t provide the level of support to make competing for a championship viable.

    ——-

    There’s always a billionaire that’s looking to buy into the NFL. The NFL won’t just do one expansion, they’ll have to go with two or it’ll throw off the balance.

    With a brand new stadium, they’ll likely have the standard 30 year lease. There’s no way to know if a potential owner will be looking to move the team in 30 years, but most billionaires won’t be alive that long.

    St. Louis did exactly what’s done in LA, Seattle, Houston, New Orleans, Tampa, Miami, Nashville, etc, etc, they show up when the team is winning and they don’t when they’re not. St. Louis had sell out crowds and waiting lists during their GSOT era.

    Towards the end, they had a run from 2007-2013 that was the worst in NFL history.

  31. The new franchise fee for the most recent addition was the $700M paid by the Houston Texans in 2002. Adjusted for inflation that would be $1.022B. If I’m a jury member, I could easily be swayed to think that might be a remedy. Plus all the money lost between 2015 and the time of a settlement. That’s a number that’s got to be near or north of $2B total. If I’m St. Louis, $100M isn’t even remotely close to my number.

  32. St. Louis did exactly what’s done in LA, Seattle, Houston, New Orleans, Tampa, Miami, Nashville, etc, etc, they show up when the team is winning and they don’t when they’re not. St. Louis had sell out crowds and waiting lists during their GSOT era.
    ==========

    You can take Seattle off that list.

    They have had great fan support, outside of the window where Ken Behring owned the team, and flirted with a move to L.A.

  33. St Louis has the internet. They are aware that they are in position to lean heavily on the NFL in getting another franchise. They’re not settling for $100M

  34. Holmgren’s frozen ‘stache says:
    November 11, 2021 at 10:16 am
    So what St Louis is saying here by turning down $100M is that NFL teams DO bring TONS of money into their municipality and community aside from direct revenue to the team and owner.

    That’s not in any way what they’re saying, and the previous statement is a bogus red herring. What this means is that, in trials for breach of contract, the penalties are determined by the net worth of the defendant(s). That’s why the NFL did everything in the legal book to change the judge and venue (and lost on both accounts). $100 mill to Kroenke, Jones, Kraft, Khan, Tepper etc is about $0.03 to the average American- we have that much on the floor by the passenger seat (or back seats if they have kids lol). Or another analogy- if a person has $2 billion in the bank and the judge determines damages are $100, the person is just going to keep breaking the law and fork over a measly $100 every time; therefore damages in cases like this have to be large enough to deter future criminal behavior or else it continues.

  35. alonestartexan says:
    November 11, 2021 at 2:43 pm

    Towards the end, they had a run from 2007-2013 that was the worst in NFL history.

    ——————————————————————————–

    Pretty bad, but hardly the worst in history.

    2013 7-9-0
    2012 7-8-1
    2011 2-14-0
    2010 7-9-0
    2009 1-15-0
    2008 2-14-0
    2007 3-13-0

  36. Holmgren’s frozen ‘stache says:
    November 11, 2021 at 12:05 pm
    The court(s) will force the NFL to expand?

    Thats one of the most obnoxious things I’ve ever read.
    ===================================================================

    No, the NFL will agree to a franchise to avoid going to court.

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