As multiple NFL teams take steps toward moving their organizations to the Los Angeles area, news continues to emerge regarding that process, including the joint bid submitted by the Oakland Raiders and San Diego Chargers to build a stadium in Carson, California.
The St. Louis Rams have also been the subject of multiple rumors regarding a potential move to Los Angeles.
Continue for updates.
Chargers, Rams, Raiders File Relocation Applications
Monday, Jan. 4
The NFL released a statement on Monday confirming that all three teams interested in relocating to Los Angeles have submitted the paperwork, per Ian Rapoport of the NFL Network:
St. Louis, San Diego and Oakland Submit Bids
Wednesday, Dec. 30
Sam Farmer of the Los Angeles Times first reported Tuesday, via Mike Florio of Pro Football Talk, that "St. Louis has filed its final offer with the NFL's Committee on Los Angeles Opportunities."
Florio added more details on the financial implications of the proposal:
The proposal likely will reflect the terms approved earlier this month by the St. Louis Board of Alderman, a package that includes $150 million in money from the city, more from the state, and an extra $100 million from the league that was wink-nod promised by two members of the league's L.A. Committee.
The league has bristled at the presumption that another $100 million will come from private contributions, but if the owners are going to keep the Rams in St. Louis, someone will have to come up with the extra cash.
Board Approves St. Louis' Portion of Funding
Wednesday, Dec. 16
The city of St. Louis' three-person Board of Estimate and Apportionment approved financing for the proposed riverfront stadium, per David Hunn and Koran Addo of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. Hunn added the vote passed with a 2-1 vote, and Mayor Francis Slay and Board of Aldermen President Lewis Reed passed the plan.
Texans Owner Comments on Status of NFL in L.A.
Wednesday, Dec. 16
Jim Thomas of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch provided comments from Houston Texans owner Bob McNair: "St. Louis, they have come up with a proposal that is getting pretty close, in my opinion, to being an attractive proposal. And if they do come up with an attractive proposal, then in my view, my personal opinion, I don’t think the Rams will receive the approval to relocate."
Raiders' Involvement Giving Owners Pause
Sunday, Dec. 13
Jason La Canfora of CBS Sports reported other NFL teams are not comfortable with the Raiders' involvement in the Carson bid:
Many of the NFL's most influential owners, including some on the league's Los Angeles Relocation committee, continue to have reservations about the Raiders' inclusion in the joint project with the Chargers in Carson, Calif. Their concerns over the strength of the Raiders' ownership group could result in no teams getting approval to move to LA in 2016, ownership sources said. Furthermore, multiple ownership sources said that the odds of a move happening to LA next year would be significantly higher if the Chargers were either moving by themselves, or if they were paired with the Rams.
King: Approval Still Far Away
Monday, Dec. 7
"Neither site is close to having the 24 votes to approve one plan," reported Peter King of the MMQB. He added:
The six-owner Committee on Los Angeles Opportunities (perhaps the NFL could name a Vice President of Committee Name Improvement) is likely to end up either 4-2 or 5-1 in favor of the Carson project, a source with knowledge of the committee’s feelings told me. One asterisk there: The committee is likely to side with Carson as long as the new St. Louis stadium is rock-solid when it comes time to vote. If any of the six believe the St. Louis proposal is flawed, they could switch to Kroenke and Inglewood.
Spanos Family Reportedly Has Support
Monday, Dec. 7
"The Carson proposal—with either the Chargers and Raiders together, or the Chargers alone—seems to have more momentum than Stan Kroenke’s plan to move the Rams to a complex in Inglewood," reported King.
"Part of the sentiment for Carson is simple: The owners want to support the Spanos family and the Chargers, feeling they have done everything they can to make a new stadium work in San Diego for years."
Rams Owner Reportedly Not Considering London Move
Monday, Dec. 7
"And as for Rams owner Stan Kroenke, should his dream of the Inglewood project die: No one knows what he’ll do. I hear he’s not interested in becoming the owner to move to London," reported King. "But every other piece of speculation—that he sells the Rams, that he keeps the Rams in a stadium he doesn’t like, that he waits out the Bowlen family and buys the Broncos—is all talk-show fodder."
Raiders May Play Home Games at Levi's Stadium
Wednesday, Dec. 2
Vic Tafur of the San Francisco Chronicle reported the NFL may "force" the Raiders to play home games in Santa Clara, at the same stadium as the San Francisco 49ers.
However, Raiders owner Mark Davis reiterated to Rapoport the team will not move to Santa Clara or St. Louis, only L.A., or stay in Oakland.
January Vote Set for NFL in LA
Wednesday, Dec. 2
NFL Owners Reportedly Lobbying for Rams-Chargers Pairing in LA
Wednesday, Dec. 2
Scott M. Reid of the Orange County Register reported on the situation ahead of a special meeting regarding potential relocation:
League owners expect Kroenke and his allies to begin pitching at the Four Seasons resort a proposal in which a second team relocating to Inglewood would be an equal partner with the Rams.
The latest moves come on the same day Kroenke met with Missouri Gov. Jay Nixon at Rams Park. Kroenke, who has avoided meeting with supporters of a $1 billion downtown St. Louis stadium, has been encouraged in recent weeks by NFL commissioner Roger Goodell to begin communicating with Nixon and Dave Peacock, the former Anheuser-Busch executive who is co-chairman of a stadium task force set up by Nixon.
While Los Angeles committee members are determined to hold a January vote on which team or teams relocate, other owners are pushing for a vote to be pushed back to late February or March.
Chargers owner Dean Spanos and Mark Davis of the Raiders are committed to building a $1.75 billion stadium in Carson. Both Kroenke and the Spanos-Davis partnership are believed to have the nine votes needed to block a team from relocating. Under NFL rules, teams seeking to relocate need the approval of three-quarters of the league's 32 owners.
If the Rams are unable to relocate from St. Louis, the franchise might remain in its current stadium on a year-to-year basis and still be a "free agent," according to Bleacher Report's Jason Cole.
Latest on Timeline for NFL's Potential Return to LA
Sunday, Nov. 22
Rapoport, citing two sources, said it "may be" until 2017 before a football team returns to Los Angeles. "It's gridlock," one of Rapoport's sources said. Rapoport added that the league is hoping for a vote in May, but it's "not certain."
Relocation Fee Reportedly Discussed
Monday, Nov. 16
"NFL owners have informally settled on a relocation fee per team to L.A. of [between $500 million and $600 million]," reported Daniel Kaplan of SportsBusiness Journal. "The relocation fee has not been set to be clear, but the [$500 million and $600 million] range is what those within league now expect to [be] the case."
Disney CEO Joins Chargers-Raiders Project
Sunday, Nov. 15
La Canfora reported Wednesday that Disney CEO Bob Iger was joining the project as chairman, adding that he will oversee the stadium construction. La Canfora reported Iger's deal "could be seven years."
In addition, La Canfora noted that Iger will "spearhead design, construction [and] fan experience for the Carson stadium. Will be viewed very favorably by other owners." Cole reported the purpose of bringing in Iger "is to assuage fears of ability of Raiders to pull off this move."
La Canfora also reported on the potential timeline on Nov. 15:
While it is possible that the timeframe for relocation votes could be pushed back into the spring—which several owners noted coming out of Wednesday's meeting—several sources said that sentiment is coming primarily from those aligned with [St. Louis Rams owner] Stan Kroenke's bid to build a stadium in Inglewood. The cities of St. Louis, San Diego and Oakland are seeking to meet NFL criteria, which could preclude a team from relocating; perhaps one of the California cities will be able to do so, as remote as that seems right now. The longer things are delayed, the more there is a chance any move to LA is pushed back to 2017, and Kroenke himself will need time to sort through a potentially very expensive issue for his proposal regarding FAA issues with airplane flyovers.
City of Oakland Feeling 'Optimism' After Meeting with NFL
Wednesday, Nov. 11
Rapoport reported Oakland is feeling more confident than it did after the last meeting with the NFL, although no official proposal was presented as it works to keep the Raiders from moving to Los Angeles.
Oakland Mayor Libby Schaaf released a statement regarding her meeting with the NFL, per Rachel Swan of the San Francisco Chronicle:
Decision on NFL in LA Could Come After January
Wednesday, Nov. 11
New York Jets owner Woody Johnson indicated the decision could come as late as March, per Cole.
Proposed Inglewood Stadium Draws Challenge from FAA
Wednesday, Nov. 11
Nathan Fenno of the Los Angeles Times reported the Federal Aviation Administration released a "preliminary report" that says the site is "presumed to be a hazard to air navigation."
The issue at hand, per Fenno, is that the stadium "could interfere with radar that tracks inbound aircraft at Los Angeles International Airport."
"The configuration of the stadium between the two runways coupled with the uncertainty of its reflective properties is the root cause of the objection to this proposal," the report read, per Fenno.
Those involved with the project believe a compromise can and will be reached.
"I had no doubt at all that we will all work out a reasonable set of mitigation measures and we will all be happy," said Chris Meany, senior vice president of the Hollywood Park Land Co., the company that controls the property.
"There is nothing about this that isn't in the ordinary course of business. This is the process you go through."
Chargers Plan to File Relocation Paperwork
Saturday, Oct. 24
David Garrick of the San Diego Union-Tribune reported the Chargers are set to file paperwork to begin the relocation process:
Mark Fabiani, the team’s special counsel, said in a radio interview that the Chargers plan to formally ask the NFL in January for permission to move.
Fabiani said the primary motive was the Chargers fully expecting the St. Louis Rams and Oakland Raiders to do the same thing, contending the Chargers can’t afford to lose the roughly 25 percent of their season ticket holders that live in Los Angeles and Orange counties.
"If everything is moving ahead, obviously we’re not going to be standing on the sidelines and watching everything go by," Fabiani told Dan Sileo on the Mighty 1090 AM. "We’ve got to stay in the game to protect the franchise."
NFL to Conduct Community Hearings on Relocation
Monday, Oct. 19
Chris Mortensen of ESPN reported the hearings will take place in St. Louis on Oct. 27, San Diego on Oct. 28 and Oakland on Oct. 29 as all three franchises continue to mull a potential move to the Los Angeles market.
League Favors Chargers-Rams LA Pairing
Thursday, Oct. 8
Vincent Bonsignore of the Los Angeles Daily News reported there was "a lot of pressure from moderates" at the league's owners' meetings to get the Rams and Chargers in the same room regarding a potential move.
On Sept. 2, Cole reported the league prefers a Chargers-Rams pairing in Los Angeles because it is concerned the Raiders lack the money to make the stadium plan happen.
However, Cole noted there isn't much trust between the Rams and Chargers at this point, which is a potential sticking point in the plan. Cole added the league's top solution to sending the Rams to L.A. is to send the Jacksonville Jaguars to St. Louis to replace them.
ESPN's Jon Gruden doesn't think the Raiders are out of the hunt just yet, as his sources claimed a move was "inevitable," per Lindsay H. Jones of USA Today.
Cole first reported on the NFL's newest plan on Aug. 12 after an owners' meeting on the topic:
Cole: Mystery LA Billionaire May Purchase Raiders
Wednesday, Oct. 7
A deal for Davis to sell part of the team to an L.A. investor "could be coming soon in hopes of moving [the] team," reported Cole.
Cole originally reported on Sept. 29 how the potential scenario would land the Raiders in Los Angeles:
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New Stadium in St. Louis Could Cost Taxpayers More Than Expected
Wednesday, Oct. 7
Ray Hartmann of St. Louis Magazine reported the latest on what a new stadium in St. Louis could cost taxpayers if the plan comes to fruition:
City taxpayers would pay $215 million more than previously reported for a new NFL stadium in downtown St. Louis under a plan submitted to officials by the stadium task force, headed by Dave Peacock and Bob Blitz.
Documents obtained by St. Louis Magazine through a Sunshine Law request show that the city’s obligations to cover debt retirement would jump from about $6 million per year at present to $9,785,000 in 2020, then increase every year to a staggering $15,975,000 in 2051.
David Hunn of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch reported on Aug. 3 that a new stadium for the Rams was "expected to cost $998 million."
Multiple Owners Oppose Rams' Potential LA Move
Sunday, Sept. 27
Florio, multiple NFL owners have made their opinions known regarding a potential move for the Rams from St. Louis to Los Angeles:
Per multiple sources, a group of influential owners strongly opposes the relocation of the Rams to Los Angeles. That group includes Panthers owner Jerry Richardson, who is emerging as a leader of the NFL’s L.A. committee.
As one source put it, Richardson and other owners view the Chargers and Raiders as more eligible to move under the league’s relocation policy, especially since it appears that St. Louis has cobbled together a viable plan for building a new stadium and keeping the Rams in the place they’ve been for the last 20 years.
San Diego, St. Louis Won't Present Stadium Proposal at Meetings
Tuesday, Sept. 15
Eric Grubman, the NFL's point person in Los Angeles, said the cities of San Diego and St. Louis wouldn't be permitted to present a stadium proposal at October's owners meeting, according to Bernie Wilson of the Associated Press.
Grubman said he felt the back-and-forth discussion the presentations might spark "usually doesn't happen at league meetings when there are outside presenters, and particularly when we have a full agenda."
Special Owners Meeting Takes Place to Discuss Raiders, Chargers Carson Stadium Plan
Tuesday, Aug. 11
Commissioner Roger Goodell said Los Angeles was the only topic of discussion in the meeting today, according to Mark Maske of the Washington Post.
Davis said he doesn't know whether or not Oakland can still work for his team, and said the presentation for the Carson plan "went great," via Tom Pelissero of USA Today.
Rapoport said Browns owner Jimmy Haslam indicated he was impressed by both projects.
On Aug. 10, Albert Breer of NFL.com reported on the city officials speaking with the NFL prior to Tuesday's meeting, noting the two Los Angeles projects would both present to the league. However, Breer did note "there is no meeting scheduled as of yet between the NFL and Oakland, [because] there's been no progress there."
"This is about deadlines and fear. The city of San Diego is pushing for a Jan. 12 election on a stadium plan. To get that on the ballot by then, the team needs to make a deal with the city by Sept. 11," Brent Schrotenboer of USA Today reported on Aug. 9.
The deadline to submit relocation applications is Feb. 15, but that might move to an earlier date. Teams also would want to file as soon as they can — possibly in December if the league allows it. Filing as soon as possible would allow enough time to work out any kinks that might come up in the application process. ...
The league doesn't want it to come down to a vote in which one franchise walks away as a loser. Finding a negotiated solution beforehand would help avoid that.
Any new stadium might not be ready until 2018. If a team applied to move next year, it would be a lame duck in its current market and would want to move as soon as possible to start selling itself in its new market. That would mean it needs temporary housing, likely the Coliseum, which is controlled by the University of Southern California. USC is interested but only can host one NFL team, according to its lease. ...
The Chargers appear certain to apply for relocation to Los Angeles County for the 2016 season, barring a surprise deal or delay. It's not because they want to leave San Diego, their home since 1961, but because they think they've practically run out of time to get a stadium deal done there without forfeiting their leverage in Los Angeles.
Judge Rules on City Ordinance
Monday, Aug. 3
Hunn of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch relayed news of the decision as the city looks to keep the Rams in town, with the franchise exploring the potential of a move to Los Angeles:
St. Louis Circuit Court Judge Thomas Frawley declared invalid the city ordinance requiring a public vote. Moreover, Frawley ruled, the placement of the new stadium, along the riverfront just north of downtown, does not break a state law requiring the building to be “adjacent” to the convention center—it is close enough, he wrote.
“‘Adjacent’ has commonly been interpreted by Missouri courts to mean ‘near or close at hand’ and as ‘not necessarily meaning contiguous,’” Frawley wrote in his ruling, “i.e. not necessarily meaning touching each other or immediately next to each other.”
NFL Meets with St. Louis Stadium Group
Friday, July 17
Bernie Miklasz of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch reported league officials met with the task force working to get a new stadium built in St. Louis. Miklasz noted the groups discussed financing for the stadium, and the potential lease that would be presented to the Rams or another NFL team.
"We continue to make progress," task force leader Dave Peacock said, per Miklasz. "And it was a good update. We covered a lot of important ground, and we'll continue meeting with the NFL... I think the NFL delegation was very pleased with the progress being made on the stadium. The feedback was positive. But we still have work to do, and we know that."
Peacock also said he was confident the city would keep the Rams, per Miklasz:
I really do (think we'll keep the team). This was a good meeting, and the NFL is satisfied with what we've done to reach this stage. But we've got to keep going until everything is done. And we're committed to getting it done.
Kroenke has been trying to build a new stadium at the Hollywood Park site in Inglewood for several months now, and St. Louis has been attempting to get financing for a new stadium to keep the team in the city.
Raiders, Chargers Owners Meet with LA Officials
Wednesday, July 1
Scott Bair of CSN Bay Area reported Davis and Chargers owner Dean Spanos met with L.A. mayor Eric Garcetti and other officials in Los Angeles to discuss the Carson stadium project, according to the Los Angeles Times.
Owners Could Delay Potential LA Expansion as San Diego Fans Demand Antitrust Suit vs. Chargers
Sunday, June 28
The San Diego Union-Tribune editorial board broke down the conflict between the city and the Chargers organization and how it could impact a potential move to Los Angeles:
San Diego Mayor Kevin Faulconer and his colleagues have been busy since then trying to convince the powers that rule the National Football League that San Diego has a workable proposal that could still be finalized this year if only the Chargers group would engage. But no more meetings with the Chargers representatives are expected at least until after an Aug. 11 gathering of all NFL owners in Chicago. That meeting was scheduled to discuss the three-ring circus in which the owner of the St. Louis Rams, Stan Kroenke, is vowing to relocate his team to Los Angeles, the Chargers have partnered with their rival Oakland Raiders to beat Kroenke to L.A., and public officials in all three cities are trying to keep their teams at home.
There is speculation that the owners at that August meeting may delay the entire process for a year to let everything percolate in the three cities to see what develops.
The speculation has surfaced after a June 22 letter from fans in San Diego who are fed up with the way negotiations have gone, demanding a lawyer to get involved to file a lawsuit against the team, per NBC San Diego's Derek Togerson.
"Our lease explicitly precludes lawsuits by the city against the team or the NFL in the event of relocation," Chargers general counsel Mark Fabiani responded, according to Cole. "Including anti-trust lawsuits. So it is a crazy idea by people who want attention by haven't bothered to read the lease."
Cole provided a statement from Faulconer's spokesman on how the negotiations between the city of San Diego and the Chargers have gone, as well as Fabiani's reaction on June 17:
On June 16, Fabiani released a statement indicating a 2015 election on the new stadium is not possible, via Pro Football Talk's Josh Alper:
On behalf of our entire organization, the Chargers thank the City of San Diego’s negotiating team for working with us to try to find a way, at this late date, to place a stadium ballot measure before voters in December 2015 while complying fully with the California Environmental Quality Act and election law requirements. Both groups have spent many hours examining possible options, and we have now discussed these options together at three formal meetings and during numerous informal conversations.
Based on all of this work and discussion, the Chargers have concluded that it is not possible to place a ballot measure before voters in December 2015 in a legally defensible manner given the requirements of the State’s election law and the California Environmental Quality Act. The various options that we have explored with the City’s experts all lead to the same result: Significant time-consuming litigation founded on multiple legal challenges, followed by a high risk of eventual defeat in the courts.
This statement comes on the heels of Faulconer saying on June 8 that a special election could occur this year regarding the financing of a new stadium to keep the Chargers in San Diego, according to Marty Caswell of The Mighty 1090.
NFL Meets with Carson, Inglewood Stadium Backers
Wednesday, June 10
The NFL's committee on L.A. opportunities held a meeting in New York with the league, including Goodell, to provide an update on the stadium proposals in Carson and Inglewood, according to Sam Farmer of the Los Angeles Times. Chargers and Raiders representative Carmen Policy commented on how the meeting went:
We as a group felt the presentation went extremely well, and we got our entire message across. We were able, maybe for the first time, to totally organize what we've been doing, what we've accomplished, and what we're going to continue to do, and why Carson is absolutely the site for a new stadium.
"The NFL has set an additional owners meeting for August 11 to discuss the L.A. topic. It will take place in Chicago, per a league source," reported Rapoport (via NFL.com's Kevin Patra) on June 4.
Rapoport added that the conference will be used to discuss an update on the progress of San Diego, Oakland and St. Louis to keep their home teams.
Raiders May Wait Until 2017 to Make Move
Thursday, May 21
Rapoport reported one scenario that could be in play for the Raiders would be to sign a one-year lease in Oakland for 2016, allow the Chargers and Rams to "sort itself out", then become the first free agent for the 2017 season.
Rapoport also stated the Raiders could potentially still move to St. Louis if the Rams were to leave.
NFL Exec Discusses LA Potentially Hosting Super Bowl
Wednesday, May 20
Grubman said that any new stadium in Los Angeles must be open for at least a year to be eligible for the 2020 Super Bowl, according to Rapoport.
Jack Del Rio Discusses Potential Move
Wednesday, May 20
Lev Facher of SFGate.com passed along comments from Raiders head coach Jack Del Rio regarding the team's potential move to Los Angeles:
“We’re not naive,” he said following Oakland’s first offseason practice Tuesday afternoon. “Those business issues are not issues that we’re going to have a say in anyhow.” ...
“Our focus is just on trying to be as good a football team as we can be,” Del Rio said. “Not that there isn’t something out there that’s going on that maybe other people are talking about—that’s their job. It’s just not our job.”
Raiders and Chargers Finalize Land Deal to Build Stadium in Carson
Tuesday, May 19
Fenno has the report:
Rapoport added more info from Davis:
"We're trying to stay in Oakland, but we have a parallel effort in Carson," said Davis, per Bart Hubbuch of the New York Post.
Davis also told Rapoport that the Raiders one-year lease with Oakland was approved for the 2015 season.
The Raiders' and the Chargers' bid to move to Los Angeles continues to grow stronger. On Monday, Cole wrote that the teams had hired Carmen Policy, a former NFL executive, to be the "director of the holding company the Chargers and Raiders formed for the Carson project."
The date for filing for relocation will be moved up as well, per Cole:
There are still many factors to consider before it can be seen as a foregone conclusion that the Raiders and the Chargers will end up in Los Angeles, however.
For starters, a proposal to build a new $1.1 billion stadium in San Diego was released Monday, per David Garrick and Lori Weisberg of the San Diego Union-Tribune. Some in San Diego feel that the plan in Carson is a leveraging tactic to get the city of San Diego to pay for a new stadium, per Chargers beat writer Kevin Acee of San Diego Union-Tribune:
Perhaps it is a bluff. But moving to a larger media market also has to be appealing for a team like the Chargers, who have struggled with blackouts in the past and would carry a different appeal being attached to Los Angeles.
Fans in Oakland and San Diego have not taken reports of a possible move well. ESPN's Josina Anderson passed along a photo of both Raiders and Chargers fans protesting outside the spring meetings:
Jim Thomas of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch shared a photo of Rams fans who want to see the team return to Los Angeles:
Nothing is set in stone yet, but one thing seems certain: NFL football will be returning to Los Angeles.