Report: NFL Floated Idea of Moving Raiders to St. Louis in 2014 with 'Brand Makeover'

Mike Chiari@@mikechiariFeatured Columnist IVMay 14, 2022

CARSON, CA - DECEMBER 22: Helmets of the Raiders during the Oakland Raiders game versus the Los Angeles Chargers on December 22, 2019, at Dignity Health Sports Park in Carson, CA. (Photo by Kevin Reece/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)
Kevin Reece/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

The NFL reportedly considered moving the then-Oakland Raiders to St. Louis in 2014 amid plans to move the Rams from St. Louis to Los Angeles.

Austin Huguelet, Joel Currier and Katie Kull of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch reported the news Saturday in the wake of the NFL and the Rams releasing records regarding the Rams' move from St. Louis to L.A.

The records show that the NFL discussed moving the Raiders to St. Louis with restructured ownership and a brand makeover, but it never happened, and the league moved the Raiders to Las Vegas instead in 2020.

Last year, the NFL settled for $790 million with the city of St. Louis in relation to moving the Rams to Los Angeles in 2016.

Within the documents acquired by the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, it was revealed that Rams owner Stan Kroenke began preparing for a move to Los Angeles in 2013 and that the NFL knew of the plans that year despite NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell saying he wasn't aware.

The Rams, Chargers and Raiders all filed paperwork to move to Los Angeles, but the Raiders were left out when the Rams and Chargers were chosen for relocation.

Now, the Rams and the Chargers share SoFi Stadium in Inglewood, California.

Moving the Raiders to St. Louis would have eased some of the sting that came along with the Rams moving. The NFL reportedly also wanted to focus on a "special diversity initiative" in relation to a Raiders relocation to St. Louis.

Instead, Raiders owner Mark Davis reached a deal to build Allegiant Stadium in Las Vegas, and the move became official for the 2020 season.

The Raiders spent their first season in Vegas without fans in attendance because of the COVID-19 pandemic, but last season they gave their fans plenty to cheer about by going 10-7 and reaching the playoffs for the first time since 2016.

Meanwhile, the Rams have reached the Super Bowl twice since relocation from St. Louis to L.A. in 2016, and they won it all last season thanks largely to the acquisition of quarterback Matthew Stafford from the Detroit Lions.

With the Rams moving and the Raiders' relocation falling through, St. Louis is left without an NFL team and has only two major professional sports franchises in the NHL's Blues and MLB's Cardinals.