Los Angeles Pushing Hard To Acquire An NFL Team
By Keith Null
Seventeen years ago the Raiders resided in Los Angeles before they decided to move back to Oakland for a variety of reasons — the most glaring being the cost of renovations to Memorial Coliseum after the 1994 northridge earthquake.
Before the Raiders called Los Angeles home the Rams spent from 1946 to 1980 there before re-locating to Anaheim (1980-1994) and eventually to their current home in St. Louis (1995- Present)
Los Angeles has long been vacant of football, patiently awaiting the next NFL team to come along.
After Hurricane Katrina devastated New Orleans and the Superdome rumblings began to surface that owner Tom Benson was considering moving the team to Los Angeles or perhaps even San Antonio.
Instead SMG, the management company responsible for the Superdome, re-built in record time and to the delight of fans hosted the teams first home game of the 2006 season in week three, a 23-3 shellacking of the Atlanta Falcons.
Sine Katrina New Orleans has re-bounded nicely and the Saints ties to the area are even stronger than before the storm.
A new lease agreement was put in place through 2025 and the Superdome, as well as the surrounding area, is currently under going a huge $385 million dollar face lift.
The Saints finally broke through and won it all in 2009, beating the Indianapolis Colts to become Super Bowl XLIV champions. Needless to say the Saints are not going anywhere for a long, long time.
While it certainly won’t be the Saints relocating to L.A., AEG development has zeroed in on at least five NFL franchises as potential teams to make the switch to the massive market.
AEG is spear heading an effort to build a 72,000 seat stadium in down town Los Angeles, which would take nearly three years to complete at a cost of 1.3 billion dollars, named “Farmers Field”. Obviously securing a franchise is the first logical step.
The five NFL teams are the Rams, Raiders, Jaguars, Vikings and Chargers that have thus far been prodded to gauge interest in the move, how much any interest the above teams have is still unclear.
It only makes sense that the Rams return to their home turf. A likely move considering their lease in the outdated Edward Jones Dome is set to expire in 2015. However the Rams seem to be turning the franchise around, and St. Louis may not want to let them go easily.
Another good candidate is the Jacksonville Jaguars — who receive little fan fare in a relatively small market. The Jags ticket sales have been declining steadily over recent seasons which is why they seem like such a prime target. Ticket sales were also cited as the reason for a potential move to Toronto.
However AEG has publicly stated that the five team mentioned are not the only ones they have contacted. The details of who were no disclosed, but they seem intent on talking to any team willing to listen to their offer. L.A. certainly presents many perks to an NFL team — which is why someone will likely pull the trigger and make the jump.