Raiders News: Birmingham, Tucson Pitch OAK on Joint Bid to Host 2019 Home Games

Scott Polacek@@ScottPolacekFeatured ColumnistFebruary 12, 2019

An Oakland Raiders helmet is on the playing field before an NFL football game against the Kansas City Chiefs in Kansas City, Mo., Sunday, Dec. 10, 2017. (AP Photo/Ed Zurga)
Ed Zurga/Associated Press

The Oakland Raiders may be splitting their home games between two different cities during the 2019 NFL season.

According to Kyle Burger of WVTM 13 in Birmingham, Alabama, the cities of Birmingham and Tucson, Arizona, are pitching a partner plan for Raiders games in 2019. Birmingham City Council member William Parker said the cities would split the team’s home games.

This is the latest update in the stadium saga that has continued since the Raiders' lease ran out on the Oakland Coliseum. The city even filed a federal antitrust lawsuit against the AFC West team in December.

Tucson has been mentioned as a possible hosting location before as the Raiders search for a temporary home while their Las Vegas stadium is constructed prior to its 2020 opening. According to a report from Greg Hansen of Tucson.com in January, Tucson attorney Ali Farhang discussed a move with Raiders President Marc Badain.

"I'd really like to bring our Tucson leaders to Oakland, meet with the Raiders brass and show them why this is the perfect Raiders move," Farhang, who is a part-owner of the Tucson Sugar Skills in the indoor football league, said. "It would be totally unexpected and out of the box. It would be visionary in a lot of ways, like their late owner (Al Davis) was in so many ways."

This comes after Raj Mathai of NBC Bay Area reported Feb. 3 the Raiders would play their 2019 games in the San Francisco Giants' Oracle Park.

However, Ian Rapoport of NFL.com reported Feb. 5 the San Francisco 49ers wouldn't waive their territorial rights for the city, meaning the team was looking at either a return to Oakland or sharing the 49ers' Levi's Stadium in Santa Clara, California.

On Feb. 8, ABC 7 reported the Raiders were negotiating with Oakland officials regarding a return to the Coliseum despite the previous lawsuit.

It appears Birmingham and Tucson are now in the mix as well as the 2019 NFL season draws closer.

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