NFL-to-LA murmurs grow louder

Cowboys owner Jerry Jones can’t stop talking, including answering questions about the NFL potentially coming back to LA. At this point Jerruh is a very tenured owner (24 years), and is involved heavily in anything involving the economic growth of the sport. The LA Daily News’ Vincent Bonsignore asked Jones about LA, and he was about as forthcoming as anyone from the league has been regarding the possibility.

“I’ve never, ever been a part of any meeting or committee, ever, that didn’t want – and as quickly as we could – a team in L.A.” Jones said. “I’ve heard the same thing – that (L.A.) can be (used) as a threat (for) teams moving out here and what have you. But that’s not right.

“I can speak for everyone I’ve ever talked to, we always preferred to get a team here.”

About Farmers Field:

Jones praised Farmers Field and disagrees with reports that his league might be souring on it.

“I have no misgiving at all about it. It’s an outstanding (project) with outstanding people involved in it,” Jones said. “Philip Anschutz is an outstanding individual and would be an asset in any way to any group to (he’s) involved with.”

Whether or not this is part of the leverage game, Jones’s comments will surely raise eyebrows in San Diego, Oakland, and St. Louis. Interestingly, Jones is happy to promote LA even as Farmers Field could provide direct competition to Cowboys Stadium for future Super Bowls, Final Fours, and college football playoff games. My sense is that the owners and Roger Goodell are eyeing the $10 billion annual revenue mark, and they know the quickest way to get there is through LA.

Jones also spoke with SI’s Peter King and gave this assessment:

“I wouldn’t be surprised if within months – I don’t know – that you’d have an announcement of intent (for a team) to come to Los Angeles.”

At what point does a threat become a promise?

56 thoughts on “NFL-to-LA murmurs grow louder

  1. Well jerry jones has to be right…California can cryvall they want but taxpayers will have to pay for a new…
    -Sacramento Kings Arena
    -Golden State Warriora Arena
    -Oakland Raiders Stadium
    -San Diego Chargers Stadium

    La could help knock off one or two of the california taxpayers just write the check and lets get started other states pay for their teams…so should we

  2. Raiders, Chargers both want stadiums and won’t get them in their current cities. Both have a history and fans in LA. I wouldn’t be surprised if both teams end up in LA, with the Raiders filing to move first.

  3. I wonder if the Raidersvhave been losing on purpose. Tim Kawakami has a interest blog about Raiders GM Reggie Mckenzie and some of the decisions he has made…kinda agree with him. For years I had my suspicion. …if mark davis wants to sell….sell..but I think its sad how far the davis family has fallen…

    Frank Blackwell is right…I wish we all had new owners that would pump life into Oakland. But looks like the tax payers are going to have to front the bill…
    I would vote yes..what about u pjk???

  4. re: would vote yes..what about u pjk???

    ..$300 million for a football stadium (only about 1/3rd of the entire cost) to be used 10 days a year? I wouldn’t vote for that. Neither will anyone in Oakland…Given the unlikelihood of a new stadium in Oakland, we have to look at the Raiders choices:
    * Being second-fiddle tenants in the brand new $1.2 billion Cathedral of the San Francisco 49ers, surrounded by red-and-gold everything and statues of Jerry Rice, Joe Montana, Bill Walsh and who knows who else.
    * Being Top Dog in the gigantic LA market, where the team still has a strong following.
    …Wonder which choice the Raiders will make and if the NFL will cooperate.

  5. Mark Davis is not much different than the Magoofs from Sacto- for the right price any deal can be struck- which poster said LA is dead and now JJ says in next 2 months announcement will be made- right around time as CC feasibility study is completed- something tells me that Mark Davis has already made up his mind-

  6. PJK, not sure why you’ve ruled out San Diego building a new stadium. It’s not dead by any means.

    Aaron, the Warriors are paying for their own arena in San Francisco, not the taxpayers.

  7. It’s hard to believe that the NFL is close to being ready to approve a team to move to LA without a definitive new stadium plan given the OK by the League. It’s very possible that Jerry Jones is aware of an imminent new stadium approval for LA that he is not yet letting on to the public. If and when the NFL becomes ready for a LA team, there will be an open bidding process from January thru February of each year for teams interested in relocating to LA. It seems that the Rams, Raiders, and Chargers are the likely teams to be considering a move to LA. Those teams not selected as the first to be allowed to relocate to LA may be considered as a possible second LA team within a few years, if and when the new football stadium is completed. The only thing that seems certain is that it will be the NFL Commissioner’s office that will make the ultimately decision on which team or teams will be allowed to move to LA.

  8. Dan: From what I read (not sure how accurate it is), the Chargers owners want $700 million in public money for a stadium. Think there’s any chance they’re going to get it?

  9. The situation in Saint Louis apparently is: The Rams lease requires their stadium be one of the top 25% in the league; it is not. Bringing it up to this standard requires (once again) $700 million in improvements, which, like the Chargers and Raiders, the Rams won’t get that kind of money from the public. So they are free to leave after next season. Can LA take all three teams? What about the Dolphins, too?

  10. pjk, as with any negotiation each side starts out with their low ball amount. That’s Spanos’ lowball. The family knows they’re going to have to provide more than $100 million. As it is, if they only put in $100 mil they’d only get $100 mil from G4 since that program is a match based program. So eventually they’ll be putting in more and they’ll be asking the city for less. So it’s hard to gauge whether the city would be willing to put some money in until the ballpark of their contribution amount is actually known.

  11. Tantalizing. Perhaps Farmer’s Field isn’t as dead as some believe. This is one of the more important financial topics the league will face for a time, and I can’t wait to see how it shakes out.

  12. Please let the Raiders go and blow up mount Davis, so the A’s can play ball in a beautiful park again..

  13. @pjk- whether the raiders move to Santa Clara or Los Angeles they will have to share with another NFL team.

    The raiders won’t make any capital investment unless its for their own spot. That is why the raiders will never go back to Los Angeles.

    If you are forced to share, may as well do it with the 49ers with no upfront cost and not having to sell part of the team. Not to mention staying near their fan base in the Bay Area, which is far larger than in LA at this point.

  14. IMHO I think LA is being saved for the rams and chargers. The raiders have a back up option in their market that those 2 other teams do not have.

    If the rams and chargers get new places, only then will the NFL consider expansion

  15. ML,

    Given the chance the NFL is actually looking at putting two teams in LA, do you think Los Angeles’s business community would get behind the Raiders image? I know it may seem like a non-factor (and it probably is), but the Raiders’ image is tied with a lot of gang activity in LA. Do you think it’s something folks with money would get behind, especially with a contrasting image that the Chargers or Rams would have?

  16. Pjk
    The yankees, red sox and other big city teams ownership will most likely side with the SF Giants TR rights ..I think lew wolff should consider this options..

    Option 1: Coliseum Field price 400-500mil. Land is all there and ready to go. Best location in bay area actually Oakland would have their coliseum city done.

    Option 2: Howard Terminal price 700-800 mil
    Nice waterfront Oakland port feel can give the team and city a boston or philly feel. But the big bad wolff wont do it

    Option 3 Cisco Field price 600-700mil
    Soon to be crisco field after August

    What do u say ppl? ??

  17. The Raiders are likely not one of the candidates for LA (why would they bother doing a cost-benefit analysis for a new Raider stadium if Mark Davis was planning to move the team out of town?) There are more likely candidates (St Louis, San Diego, Jacksonville, or others) Also, with the Niners moving to the south bay, the Raiders will have the whole north bay to themselves now. The Raiders are drawing near sellouts despite no winnning teams for 11 consecutive years (if they played like that in LA – they’d average 20,000 per game)

  18. Ted: If the Raiders are so willing to play in Santa Clara, why haven’t they already signed a lease to play there, which could be contingent upon no deal getting done with Oakland? Because the Raiders don’t want to play in The Cathedral of the San Francisco 49ers. They would rather go back to LA than do that. They’ve already passed up the chance to “Raider-ize” the 49ers stadium, to an extent. Now, they’d have to play in my aforementioned Raiders-fans-surrounded-by-49er-lore scenario. Think they want that? Obviously, the Raiders don’t.

  19. re: (why would they bother doing a cost-benefit analysis for a new Raider stadium if Mark Davis was planning to move the team out of town?) T

    …Easy. The Raiders have to show the NFL that they’ve done due diligence and have tried very hard to stay in Oakland. Mark is not Al Davis, quick to run to court…And what good are “near sellouts” for the Raiders if the team is losing money and is among the league’s lowest – if not THE very lowest – revenue generator?

  20. That is the Raiders fault, poor investment in draft choices, etc., not the eastbay fanbase. Besides, Goodell would likely want the Raiders to stay put, and would not mind Jacksonville or St. Louis relocating though.

  21. Big city owner Jerry Rheinsdorf (perhaps second in command to Selig re MLB influence) has already stated the A’s should be in San Jose, and the Yankees Steinbrenner thinks minor markets should NOT have MLB franchises (ie hates revenue sharing!). Yeah, those big city owners sure look like they’re ready to back the Giants and keep the A’s on welfare! (Sarcasm)

  22. @duffer – The NFL is doing the study jointly with the Raiders. Chances are that whatever Davis decides to do, the NFL will support assuming it pencils out for the franchise.

  23. @ML – there would be more rumours linking the Raiders and LA, there is little news about that yet. Goodell is powerful (way more than Selig) and has already expressed displeasure with Jacksonville’s attendance. St. Louis does not offer a large NFL fanbase either.

  24. @duffer – It’s silly to argue that Goodell or anyone in the NFL is singling out any one team for preferential treatment. They are going to do their best for the collective, whatever that entails. Until Davis signs an extension at the Coliseum, the Raiders are a free agent franchise. In other words, the league is controlling the message and the movement. They hold the purse strings to the G-4 fund AND control hookups with Goldman Sachs or any other equity firms.

  25. Off-topic: “Marketplace” produced by American Public Media did a story tonight on the A’s ballpark situation. There is nothing in the story that you guys don’t already know, but it is nice that, for whatever it is worth, the whole ballpark mess is getting some national publicity. If you are interested in reading or hearing the story, please go to:

  26. Also though, the Raiders would look foolish by claiming that they are swimming in red ink in Oakland because of the fanbase. Their poor management, and 11 consecutive non winning years are more of a factor, The team draws well in Oakland, considering its performance. Spanos, the Chargers owner, has definitely had more discussions with Los Angeles than the Raiders have. Also, it appears that St. Louis may be interested in Los Angeles also.

  27. Haven’t the Jaguars recommitted to Jacksonville? It’s going to Chargers,Raiders or Rams to LA, or maybe two of those.

  28. re: The team draws well in Oakland…

    …not in the luxury suites they don’t. Aren’t Raiders suites leased for a fraction of what other teams can charge?…And how do we know how many discussions Mark Davis has had with folks in LA? It’s not like he’s going to invite along the TV came3ras or put out a press release everytime he does.

  29. re: the team draws well in Oakland

    …They are cutting capacity to barely 50,000. Doesn’t sound like they’re drawing well

  30. The NFL does not want the Raiders moving to Los Angeles and continue losing due to poor management though. One would believe that Goodell and co. would scrutinize the Raiders situation and be sure the team would move for the right reasons. Right now, the Raiders claim of bad fan support would seem lame – considering how badly the team has been managed for the past 10 years.

  31. @duffer – The Raider fanbase doesn’t get to use poor performance as an excuse. Plenty of teams have been bad for years (Bills, Redskins, Browns) yet they continue to draw. The Raiders aren’t. Maybe it’s a California thing, maybe it’s a market thing. Whatever the reason is, don’t expect the NFL to have much sympathy.

  32. True, the Browns and Bills have been especially bad, for a longer stretch than the Raiders, and still achieve sellouts. Even so, the Raiders moving to LA seems far from a slam-dunk though, there are too many reasons why the team would avoid moving there.

  33. Duffer, there are two very big reasons for them to move there though. They have at least a plurality of NFL fans in LA unlike in the Bay Area, and there’s corporate money in LA that would line up to purchase NFL suites even to the Raiders at either NFL stadium.

  34. With an AEG type of agreement though – with AEG buying 35% of the team? (and leasing Farmers Field to the Raiders also)Staying at the Coliseum or moving to Santa Clara would make more sense, until a new stadium in Oakland or Dublin, etc. could be be built. The team also wants to avoid the gang association link which would be present if they moved back to LA.

  35. @ Dan-the Raider fan base remaining in L.A. is greatly exaggerated. It’s nowhere near as large as it once was, and has been in steady decline for over the past 5 years. There is currently a huge groundswell of support and a growing fan base for the Rams to return to L.A. I’ve seen so many Rams, Chargers, 49ers, Steelers, and Cowboys fans down South, in addition to Raider fans in L.A., that it would be far from a slam dunk that the Raiders would have a built-in ready fan base. As for Corporate $$$, that is debatable. The Raiders can certainly be blamed for the lack of corporate support they currently generate, but that could certainly change over the next year or so. Remains to be seen.

  36. Darren, that may be but among fans who bother to show their fandom on sites like Facebook, the Raiders are still the biggest game in town in most of the Inland Empire and LA area (other than Orange County).

    As for corporate support, with guys like AEG or Roski involved, they’d offset much of the bad management issue that guys like Davis bring to the table when it comes to corporate money. AEG and Roski just need any team, even the Raiders, to make a go of it.

  37. Look at that map and notice where the Raiders are NOT the most popular – right where they are now in the Bay Area. They are playing in 49er Country when Raider Country is down south. I keep hearing about throngs of fans who still make the drive from LA to Raiders games in Oakland, even…

  38. Everybody but the East Bay’s corporate base is to blame for the small East Bay corporate base… This argument gets so old. The East Bay has a small corporate base to buy tickets for corporate events (and help fund stadium construction by doing so). It doesn’t matter who you blame or why (though I’d argue that on field performance is not exactly high on the radar of companies buying tickets to host events at a stadium), it is a FACT that the East Bay has far fewer large companies than Silicon Valley or Los Angeles. You can’t “opine” that fact away by making arguments about why they don’t buy tickets… Those are two completely separate (if related) issues. One is about capitalizing on a market, the other is about the size of the market to capitalize upon. The Raiders (and the recent city funded report) both point out that the size of the market to be capitalized upon is small. Too small to fund construction of a stadium with 100% private funds.

  39. The Raiders in 1995 were given 120+ brand new, state-of-the-art luxury suites to lease. It has not gone well. What reason is there to think it would go just great in another new stadium? (The Raiders already have half a new stadium, remember.)

  40. Both the LA version of the Raiders and Rams enjoyed a large corporate base, and opted to bolt out. Also the Farmers Field/AEG option has been possible for several years, no franchise has taken them up on it yet. NFL in Los Angeles evidently has some drawbacks.

  41. The Raiders had no premium seating to offer that corporate base in LA, at the decaying, antiquated LA Coliseum. That’s why the Raiders bolted back to Oakland, which provided that premium seating. But it turned out the demand wasn’t there in the East Bay.

  42. It also turned out the Raiders sucked and their fans have the reputation of being the most hostile and violent in the country (fair or not). That’s not going to attract families or corporations.

  43. The Raiders plan for a new stadium seems doable – They’ll contribute $300 mil., the NFL $200 mil., leaving Oakland to finance the remaining $300 mil. If Santa Clara can fund $150 mil. for the Niners – there will likely be a way that Oakland, Dublin, etc. can finance $150 mil. or more.

  44. Thank u duffer!!!
    Maybe if the Raiders agree to pay more rent on the next lease extension Oakland amd Alameda county would be more inclined to do it. Also when Oakland does decide to put up money there has to be a plan to provide a way for the city of Oakland to make moneyvoff the new stadium. They need a convention center a hotel or a musuem so that the new Raider stadium has something to do

  45. Oakland spending $300 million on a football stadium? I can’t see them spending $300 on a football stadium. The city has had to lay off police officers while spending $17 million a year on the existing stadium. And once again, how can Oakland commit that kind of $$ to the Raiders without offering at least that much to the A’s? Oakland will make it easy on itself and offer $0.00 to all of the teams.

  46. Why does everyone keep thinking that Oakland HAS to come yup with this supposed $300 million funding gap? First, that # may or may not even be a concrete #. Second, that is why private investors (such as Rick Tripp of Tripp Development) have forwarded proposals to the City and County for review. The financial burden will in no way fall strictly on the shoulders of Oakland. There will be some type of private investment (too early to tell how much), hopefully some kind of corporate partnership (which because of the terrible job the Raiders have done in the past of fostering, they are now scrambling to make these partnerships), and possibly some investment from in-stadium taxes, hotel taxes, rental car taxes, etc. Anyone who believes that the City of Oakland will have to shoulder a $300 million price tag themselves is ill-informed.

  47. Santa Clara funded $150M by creating a new tax and having it pass in an election. If you think Oakland residents are going to pass a new tax to generate twice as much, it’s your world.

  48. “It also turned out the Raiders sucked and their fans have the reputation of being the most hostile and violent in the country (fair or not).”
    No one who has been to games in Philly, New York, Foxborough, or a host of other cities can reasonably believe that to be true. For that matter, we’ve seen more horrific violence at Candlestick Park than the Coli in recent years, and not just when the Raiders were there.

  49. Anyone who is operating under the presumption that Oakland WON’T have to come up with something resembling $300M is wearing rose colored glasses.

  50. Because we have a fucked up owner who never wanted to stay in Oakland…So when the Raidera get their new stadium, the A’s can do what the LA Angels did and convert the coliseum back to a balpark.

    In fact pjk and ml…getting fuckin tired of ur Oakland hatin…to be honest I think mlb has a strong case to STOMP over San Jose. again either invest in Coliseum City or get the fuck out the bay area…i would love to see u guys with San Antonio A’s stuff on.

  51. @stand

    Chill out. Only 2/3 teams publicly want out of Oakland. Davis has until the end of the year to file the paperwork and sneak in some Mayflower trucks to the Coliseum if he is leaving. Don’t hate on someone who just points out the facts and has kept this blog going for 7+ years.

  52. @Mike: seriously Aaron is drinking when he posts. Next he’ll be saying the A’s should leave, he’s that all over the map.

  53. @baynative

    LEMme aloNE u biG bully

  54. Someone needs to be put on time out (again)..

  55. @TONY D a.k.a glass joe

    Hey im just saying that there is support in the bay area for a new Raider Stadium…a lot will depend on how the team does this 2013 season…when or if theyvdo well like playoffs or mihht have a god damn chance to really spark some east bay corporate support.

    And why are we toyin with the astros…

  56. @all
    I hope they leave B. Colon alone during these ped witchhunts…to md I nevet gave a damn about ped ir hgh…..using A Rod and Braun as the cover guys of mlb drug use is the same song they did with Bonds pre facebook/twitter world.

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