The NFL owners meetings have broken up.
Commissioner Roger Goodell has given ‘lip service’ to the NFL-to-LA story He has provided bullet-point thoughts, generic as they may be, about the 3-teams with Stadium problems, and the city that doesn’t have a team.
So he implores the San Diego Mayor and his Task Force to continue full speed ahead with their ideas about financing a new stadium at the Qualcomm sight. He praises St. Louis and its civic leaders, for the aggressive approach they have taken to building a new Rams Stadium. And he monitors, renewed efforts in Oakland, involving now the city and county, about how to pay for a 55,000-seat Raiders Stadium.
The NFL owners will meet in May, and by then San Diego, Oakland and St. Louis may have their plans and ideas in place, to present to Dean Spanos, Stan Kroenke and Mark Davis.
This will be a challenge in California, where dollars seem tougher to come by when it comes to local financing in San Diego and in Oakland, but less of a challenge where the state of Missouri and St. Louis seem really linked to get it done.
There is an alternative idea that is floating around out there. Though the NFL continues to deny, at least in public, the discussions are taking place, they have had to at least think about this. Reality says expansion should seriously be considered.
Los Angeles, the number 2-market in the world, and the biggest city in Canada,Toronto, are open territories, with lots of money, and probably lots of investors. Think of the NFL expansion fees fellow owners could rake in from Canada and LA. Think of the revenue streams that could be created with a clean piece of paper in Los Angeles, and a dominion wide franchise that Oh-Canada would wrap its arms around.
The NFL owns LA, and the new owner of the Buffalo Bills, Terry Pegula, says he would not fight a franchise going in the other side of Lake Ontario, eventhough some Canadians would possibly give up Bills tickets to root for the home team at the Skydome-Rogers Center.
Expansioin would solve lots of issues, even if 34-is an odd number. You’d be gaining two huge television markets, and a truly new network partner to the north.
You would solve the relocation threat, and still work with the Rams-Chargers-Raiders to solve their stadium problems. You would no longer have the mortal sin on your soul of allowing another city to hijack established franchises from cities that have supported those bad franchises.
Yes Goodell has already activated his Committee on Los Angeles. What he should do next is explore this alternate solution, and form his Expansion Committee.
Take a different look at the profit model from the entrance fees expansion owners would pay, the new TV haul of revenue with additional contracts, PSLs, skybox money, merchandising money, plus the good will you’d create by preserving teams in towns, whose loyal fans don’t deserve to lose their franchise in the middle of the night.
New teams in two new markets seems like win-win, for Los Angelinos, les Canadians, and the Bolts-Silver & Black, and Rams fans. Just do it…