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Does the NFL actually want to go back to LA?

By: Corey Parkinson

St. Louis Rams owner Stan Kroenke might ignore the relocation rules and move his franchise to Los Angeles no matter what.

St. Louis Rams owner Stan Kroenke might ignore the relocation rules and move his franchise to Los Angeles no matter what.

There will be at least one, possibly two NFL franchises in Los Angeles before too long. The Chargers, Raiders, and Rams are vying for the country’s second largest media market. The Raiders and Rams left Los Angeles in 1995 for Oakland and St. Louis.The Chargers meanwhile played their inaugural season in Los Angeles before moving to San Diego in 1961. Since the departure of the Raiders and Rams the NFL has failed to put a team in Los Angeles, that issue may finally be coming to an end after 20 years. Since 1995, the idea of relocating to Los Angeles has become a bargaining chip for NFL teams get their way in terms of getting new stadiums or renovations. Possibly the closest the NFL has come to going back to L.A. was in 1999 when the NFL was searching for a suitable site for a 32nd franchise before deciding to put a team back in Houston.. And so 16 years later here we are.

Stan Kroenke, the owner of the Rams, has already purchased property in Inglewood, CA with construction set to begin in December of this year whether he has league approval or not. The Chargers and Raiders have a proposed joint stadium in Carson, CA which was approved by the Carson City Council on May 5, 2015. The issue at hand seems to be each team getting the required 24 votes to move per the NFL Relocation guidelines. Some believe that Kroenke will move the Rams regardless of league approval and will use the same argument the Colts used in 1984 in which the Rams are a separate business and the NFL cannot dictate where the business is located. The issue with that is if a team moved without NFL approval they could, in turn, lose the right to host Super Bowls and other financial help the NFL would offer.

The current belief is that neither of the two options will have enough votes individually in support of moving to L.A. but that both sides have enough support to block the other from moving. Another key issue facing the Rams ability to move to L.A. is that the Chargers holds the territorial rights to Los Angeles. This means that any team not named the Chargers moving to L.A. would have a huge issue with the San Diego team. This past week, the league met to discuss the relocation fee, which is believed to be between $500 and $600 million. There is also big speculation that the NFL owners won’t vote on relocation until the owner’s meeting in March. This poses many problems, the biggest being that it gives the team that is moving to L.A. a very small window to sell season tickets and PSL’s for the upcoming season. Also, it means that all three teams, which will all undoubtedly file for relocation by the deadline in January, will have to wait two months before settling on a temporary home until a permanent home is complete.

What this boils down to is numbers, and most owners believe that a city that has lost all three teams in the past — including the Rams and Raiders in the same year — will only be able to successfully support one franchise. With the belief a decision wont come until March, this black cloud could in theory hang over the NFL’s head for another season with an end in sight for the 2017 season. It’s getting more confusing by the second. Is L.A. ready for some football? Or better yet is the NFL ready to take another shot at Los Angeles? It doesn’t seem like there will be answers all that soon.

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Corey Parkinson

Staff Writer
Corey grew up a sports fanatic and an athlete. A baseball player up until he was 18, his passion and love for the game has remained unchanged. From the time he was five if it involved a ball that you threw or kicked, Corey was all in. His passion for journalism began at the age of 10 when he wrote a play about a World Series involving the Seattle Mariners and The New York Mets. As a Sports Media and Marketing major currently at Full Sail University, Corey is working his way to becoming an MLB beat writer. Writing for SoMuchSports.com has given him the platform to share his knowledge and passion for sports and primarily his undying love for baseball.

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