NFL Expansion: 10 Cities That Could Host an NFL Team in the Future

Daniel WolfSenior Writer IJune 30, 2010

NFL Expansion: 10 Cities That Could Host an NFL Team in the Future

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    One of the nation's largest markets (LA) still lacks an NFL team.

    The NFL have been talking expansion outside of the country for the past several years, and fortunately that talk has simmered down in 2010.

    To bring back the talk, I have chosen 10 cities that are in the United States that could host an NFL franchise to expand the league to more markets.

    Without delay, the following are the cities...

10. Salt Lake City, Utah

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    Salt Lake City skyline

    Even though Salt Lake City would be one of the smallest markets and populated cities in the NFL, having an NFL stadium with those Rocky Mountains in the background of that picture would be a breathtaking site.

    Salt Lake City's population is 185,000-plus which is more than Green Bay's population of 101,000-plus and they fill in Lambeau Field.

9. Norfolk, Virginia

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    Norfolk skyline

    Norfolk may not have a huge population, but having a stadium overlook the Atlantic Ocean would be a site to see.

    With a population of 233,000-plus in Norfolk, the city compares to the population of Buffalo.

8. Portland, Oregon

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    Portland skyline

    Portland has been known as a host to escape convicts and criminals, but the time to host an NFL team may be sometime in the future too.

    With a population of 566,000-plus, Portland is a similar size to both Las Vegas (who might be able to host an NFL team) and Atlanta, who already has a team.

7. Sacramento, California

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    Sacramento skyline

    Sacramento is located about an hour and a half Northeast of Oakland via I-80 and even though that may seem too close to the Bay Area, the city's population could host an NFL team.

    Sacramento's population is 466,000-plus which is similar in size to Kansas City.

6. Omaha, Nebraska

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    Omaha skyline

    The cornfields need more football to watch and Nebraska fans do love their college Cornhuskers, which means that they could love a pro team too.

    Omaha is ranked in the top 50 US cities in population with 454,000-plus which is comparable to Cleveland.

5. Orlando, Florida

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    Orlando's skyline

    Even though Florida already has three NFL teams with the Dolphins, Jaguars, and Buccaneers, Orlando could also be home to a fourth team.

    Tampa Bay may only be a quick hour to hour and a half drive away, but say Disney wanted to get into the NFL, then they easily have the buying power to bring a team to the city.

    Orlando's population is 235,000-plus which is comparable to Buffalo's population.

4. Columbus, Ohio

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    Columbus skyline

    Many do not realize that Columbus is the largest populated city in Ohio and its population total is that of both Cleveland and Cincinnati combined.

    The Ohio State Buckeyes do play in Columbus and having their own NFL team could be a hard sell to those die-hard Bucks fans, but the population can sustain an NFL team.

    Columbus's population is 770,000-plus which is comparable to Indianapolis's population.

3. Las Vegas, Nevada

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    Las Vegas strip

    Las Vegas is one of the biggest tourist stops in the world, but can they host an NFL team?

    There is a possibility and there is no denying that there is plenty of money to buy an NFL franchise.

    Are the citizens who live in Las Vegas NFL fans though?

    They certainly were not Arena Football fans, since the team moved to Cleveland.

    There is no doubt a Las Vegas NFL team would be very flashy too—gold and green would probably be the team's colors for obvious reasons.

    Vegas's population is 567,000-plus which is comparable to Atlanta's population.

2. San Antonio, Texas

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    San Antonio's Alamodome, which plays host to the annual Alamo Bowl, is a football stadium with a capacity of 65,000.Brian Bahr/Getty Images

    Both Dallas and Houston represent the state of Texas in the NFL, but adding another Texas team seems necessary due to the large size of the state itself and the popularity of football there.

    San Antonio is also one of the 10 biggest cities in the U.S. and has plenty of people living there to support an NFL team—plus the 65,000-capacity Alamodome to boot.

    San Antonio's population is 1.3 million, which is comparable to San Diego's and Dallas' populations.

1. Los Angeles, California

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    Stadium concept for LA

    Los Angeles has been a host city for both the Rams and Raiders in the past, but now they are having trouble just getting one team to come to Southern California.

    Rumors say the Jacksonville Jaguars or Minnesota Vikings may move to LA, but the Jags are the most likely option of the two unless an expansion team is granted down the road first.

    LA's population is 3.8 million (population estimates are from 2009).

BONUS: Chicago, Illinois

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    Chicago skyline

    This is not intended to anger Bears fans, but Chicago is the third largest city in the US with a population of approximately 3 million.

    The city already has two professional baseball teams, and there could be a chance the city would support another NFL team.

    Sadly, it would be very hard for another Chicago-based NFL team to get out from under the shadow of the Bears, but that's why this is just a bonus slide.

Any Other Cities You Think?

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    San Jose skyline

    San Jose perhaps?

    List what other cities do you think could host an NFL team in the comments.