NFL Teams That Could Be a Perfect Fit for the New Team in Los Angeles
The city of Angels deserves an NFL team. They haven't had a team since 1994. With some of the teams in the NFL getting such poor attendance levels, it is time to send an NFL back out west to Los Angeles.
The city itself has 3,792,621 people without including the suburbs; that makes it the largest city in the state of California and the second most populous city in the United States after New York City. The city itself is the focal point of the larger Los Angeles-Long Beach-Riverside area, which combined has a population of 17.8 million people. That is a ton of people who all enjoy football, based on the fact that the plan was to have USC play on Sunday's if there was not an NFL season.
Finally, yesterday the developers that have been seeking to build an NFL stadium in downtown Los Angeles were granted a City Council endorsement. This puts the city of Los Angeles one step closer to acquiring the team that has long deserved to be there.
"Anschutz Entertainment Group president and chief executive Tim Leiweke said that the council's 12-0 vote in favor of a framework deal on the project's funding and time line sends a strong message to the NFL that the city is behind the proposal for a 72,000-seat NFL stadium on the city's convention center campus." (Citation credited to CBS, http://www.cbssports.com/nfl/story/15417842/la-council-approves-framework-to-build-nfl-stadium.)
The agreement currently has the insurance of $275 million in tax-exempt bonds for the relocation of a convention center hall to accommodate the proposed $1.2 billion football venue, which would then become known as Farmers Field, the new stadium for the city of Los Angeles.
Oakland Raiders: The Black and Silver
"JUST WIN BABY!" - Al Davis
Formerly known as the Los Angeles Raiders for 12 seasons (1982-1994), when the Raiders moved to Los Angeles in 1982 they finished 8-1, first in the AFC, in a season shortened by a strike. However, they lost in the second round of the playoffs to the Jets.
Their next season they finished 12-4 and won the AFC playoffs and then defeated the Redskins in the Superbowl. In the 12 seasons that the Raiders played in Los Angeles, they won a Super Bowl Championship, an AFC Championship, three AFC West Championships and made the playoffs in seven of their 12 seasons. The Raiders also accumulated an overall record of 118-82 in those seasons, giving them a win percentage of 0.695, which is much better than any that the Raiders have posted since they have returned to Oakland.
The Raiders are owned by Al Davis, who has always been known as the most unpredictable and outspoken owner in the NFL. Is there a better fit than him for the city of Angels? The city of Los Angeles doesn't accept anything less than winning and greatness from their teams, or at least that is what they expect.
The Raiders moving back to Los Angeles could be a perfect fit for the city, the people and the team. Bringing the Raiders back to the glory that they experienced in Los Angeles, along with their fans that have long stayed faithful to them in Southern California, would be a perfect fit.
The Rams: Time to Move Back to the City...Not Anaheim
The Los Angeles Rams played their home games at the LA Memorial Coliseum from 1946 to 1979. In that time, they won one NFL Championship, appeared in one Super Bowl in 1979, won two NFL National Championships, one NFL Western Championship, one NFC Championship, one NFL West Divisional Championship, two NFL Coastal Divisional Championships and seven NFC West Championships. They also made the playoffs 14 times. Short story? The LA Rams were super successful when they played in the LA Memorial Coliseum. (Not Included in these is when the Rams left the LA Coliseum and moved out to Anaheim.)
The Rams are currently coming out of a rebuilding situation with their new QB Sam Bradford. What better way to show off your team to the world than playing in LA? It would be great exposure and could get the Rams back to their status that they had as one of the best franchises during the 70s.
Not to mention the fact that the Rams are 30th in the League in attendance, averaging about 53,000 fans a game, giving them about 423,400 people who attend their games in an average season. Moving them to LA would boost those numbers, which means more money for the NFL.
The Vikings and Their Crumbling Home
The Hubert H. Humphrey Metrodome is aging and getting worse every season. Last year was one of the best examples that the Vikings' home is not going to be fit for football much longer. Last season the Metrodome collapsed after a heavy snow. This stadium is not the kind that any team or player wants to play in.
The Vikings are trying to get the state of Minnesota to cough up money for a new stadium and haven’t had much luck yet. The state is facing a $5 billion budget deficit and the public is overwhelmingly against ponying up state funds for a new home for the team.
With the state of Minnesota not wanting to put up for a new stadium for the Vikings, it might be time for them to move to LA and start anew in a new city with a new fanbase. The Vikings—just like the Rams—are not doing too well in the attendance category. They currently rank 28th in the NFL with an average of 58,800 fans a game and 470,000 a year.
With the new Stadium being built in LA, it could be just what the Viking franchise is looking for, including many more fans to come to their games.
Buffalo Bills...the Aging Owner and the Offer of Money
Ralph Wilson is getting older and older. He is currently 92 years old. The money being thrown away by AEG is something that might be too much for an old owner who might be looking for a way out. The current thought is that when Wilson is done with his ownership of the Bills that it is most likely that the AEG group will be the leading ones that would buy the Bills and then promptly move them to Los Angeles.
The Bills have been struggling for awhile in Buffalo but that doesn't mean that their fanbase is not loyal. Another article on BR was posted by a Bills fan that shows they are still passionate about their team. (http://bleacherreport.com/articles/745736-buffalo-bills-moving-to-la-would-be-a-slap-against-all-nfl-fans)
As stated in the article, it seems like there has been some interest by Jim Kelly to try and buy the team and keep them in Buffalo. But it is highly unlikely that he and his group of investors would be able to outbid the AEG group.
Buffalo is currently 22nd in the NFL based on attendance and currently get about 63,200 fans a game and 442,366 a year. This currently puts them ahead of the Pittsburgh Steelers. So does that mean that the Steelers should be on this list to possibly move to LA? No, it doesn't. The reasons that the Bills are on this list are based primarily on the fact that the owner is 92 and could possibly be looking to sell the team.
I see it less likely for the Bills to move than the Raiders, Rams or Vikings. However, the pieces are in place for a possible move to LA. Only time will tell the fate of the Bills.
Wayne Weaver's Dedication to Jacksonville: Can Money Convince Him Otherwise?
Wayne Weaver has been linked to many statements that indicate he is dedicated and faithful to Jacksonville and that he has no intention of moving the team to Los Angeles. Key words are that HE has no intention of moving the team. This doesn't shut the door on the idea that he may be willing to sell the team to someone that does want to move the team to LA. As stated earlier, the AEG group has shown a lot of interest in buying a team and moving them to Los Angeles, and many signs have pointed to the fact that they have shown interest in the Jaguars.
The AEG developers have been given the approval they needed to build a downtown LA stadium next to Staples Center. So it appears that it is no longer just speculation that there is going to be a team in LA, but just a matter of time before a team moves there.
The picture below shows how the AFC could look if the Jaguars moved to Los Angeles. It seems that the NFL would move the Kansas City Chiefs to the AFC South and move the new Los Angeles Jaguars to the AFC West. This does seem to make a lot of sense if you were to move a team because it would be a pretty easy switch for the divisions.
The main difference between the Jaguars and the rest of the teams that have been mentioned in a possible move to Los Angeles is that the rest of the teams have history and fans that live and die for their teams. The Jags fans are not bad, but they don't have the history and tradition that other teams have.
This is why it may be that the Jaguars are most likely to move to Los Angeles of any other team in the NFL. The only other option that may work and save all the franchises would be if LA got the 33rd Franchise in the NFL.