PHOENIX –- The prospect of relocating one, possibly two teams to Los Angeles is on the agenda at this week’s NFL owners meetings. The Oakland Raiders, St. Louis Rams and San Diego Chargers have updated the league on the progress of stadium construction efforts in their home markets and in L.A.
NFL executive vice president Eric Grubman, the league’s front man for Los Angeles relocation efforts, will report those findings to owners Monday morning. Owners will be able to ask questions about the progress of competing projects to bring NFL football back to Los Angeles.
Rams owner Stand Kroenke is fronting a proposal to build a venue in Inglewood. The Chargers and Raiders have joined forces on a stadium plan in Carson. Both privately-funded projects have been fast-tracked, so there’s certainly new business to discuss.
The NFL has updated owners on L.A. relocation possibilities in the past, but this time the league has solid information to dispense.
“This will be the first time that I’ll have the opportunity to give specific answers,” Grubman said on Sunday evening. “Up until now, I’ve had to walk a tight rope of giving a briefing without parting with any information that was confidential. No teams were out in the open. No sites were out in the open. Now we have a lot more to work with.”
An update is all that's expected at these owner's meetings, though things could heat up at the next owner's meetings in May. Even then, relocation votes aren't expected.
There will be L.A. talk involving the Raiders this week, and there will be a progress report on activity to keep the team in Oakland. There is a healthy dose of skepticism surrounding the efforts to build a new football stadium in the East Bay, especially with the city’s exclusive negotiating agreement with real-estate developer Floyd Kephart. The NFL prefers a municipality deal directly with a team.
Oakland and Alameda County’s efforts have been slow-moving to this stage, with a rate of progress that has frustrated owner Mark Davis and the league alike. Without much concrete coming out of the East Bay, there is little optimism associated with the project at this stage.
“They have to get specific and they have to get aggressive,” Grubman said. “They haven’t done either yet.”