Will the Oakland Raiders, San Francisco 49ers Share a New Stadium?
It came as a surprise to hear on Wednesday that San Francisco 49er fans had indeed voted in favor of a new 64,000 seat stadium to be built.
For years, the famous words of "Candlestick Park" were always associated with San Francisco football, and it had become hard to imagine the 49ers away from their beloved home and placed firmly in a new billion dollar stadium in Santa Clara.
However, before Mike Singletary and Alex Smith can get too cozy with the idea of a new and improved home ground, it seems they may have some unexpected visitors who the 49ers are all too familiar with.
Yes, the San Francisco's newly planned luxurious stadium is also set to become the new, partially shared home ground of the Oakland Raiders.
It is a move that has some fans scratching their heads, considering that the Oakland-Alameda County Coliseum is more than a fitting home for the black hole and their assortment of rowdy fans.
But like everything in life, sooner or later, some form of change will occur.
So is this the type of change that would benefit the NFL as a whole? Or will it simply add a little bit more spice to the well-detailed yet seemingly dead rivalries of California football?
Well, according to San Francisco 49ers team president Jed York, this move is one that both parties feel quite strongly about.
“First of all, we called out in our term sheet that this could be a two team building and on this surface it makes a lot of sense what the Jets and Giants did,” York said. “We haven’t had these detailed conversations with the Raiders. Mr. (Al) Davis and Amy (Trask) are working on a few facilities in Oakland and I know that is their primary focus."
Therefore, a serious question must be asked: Will this act as a replica of what the New York Jets and New York Giants were able to create?
Firstly, these two teams are very different. The obvious point worth making here is that both teams are from separate locations, and aren't in the same position that both New York teams were in at the time.
The second point worthy of making seems to go a little unnoticed right now. Years ago, the Oakland Raiders' sole concern was to avoid the glitz and glamour of Hollywood, and they aimed to stray away from the mainstream ideologies of California. As a result they had a stadium located in a more suitable, working class area.
Now that a possible shared stadium is on the cards, doesn't this add to a more mainstream media approach when it comes to the Oakland Raiders?
Well, perhaps this may not be a bad thing, and indeed it could boost the Raiders confidence a little, but it does defeat the original purpose of building a stadium away from Hollywood.
The difference between the New York teams and San Francisco and Oakland, is that the New York fan base can draw a large crowd no matter how either team is doing.
Sure, the 49ers fan base is large, but if the Raiders continue in their unimpressive slump, a new and glitzy stadium may seem a little empty and boring if one team is having a horrid season.
For 49er fans, the shared stadium idea only scratches the surface of this new stadium announcement. Many fans have debated the idea of a possible name change to Santa Clara, but of course this issue is still up in the air.
For Raider fans, this could either benefit the franchise, or do it some harm. There is no doubt that the black hole itself won't be affected, however when it comes to looking at the Raiders as a team, perhaps they may be a little overshadowed like the Jets were for so many years in New York.
It's a move that has both good and bad. One thing is for sure though, with both teams playing on the same ground, expect to see some fierce competitiveness between the two.
From Candlestick Park and the Colliseum, to Silicon Valley? We'll have to wait and see, but both teams fans are as passionate as one another. This odd but realistic move makes for an exciting NFL future, and we may see a remake of the original Odd Couple in years to come.
Ryan Cook is a Featured Columnist for the Bleacher Report . He is also an NFL writer for Real Sports Net , and Green Bay Packer writer for Fan Huddle and PackerChatters . Don't forget to follow him on Twitter .
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