It’s been two decades since the NFL has had a team in Los Angeles, but it’s looking more and more like that will change in the coming days. All 32 of the league’s owners are meeting in Houston on Tuesday and Wednesday, likely resulting in at least one team moving to southern California.
The Oakland Raiders, San Diego Chargers and St. Louis Rams have filed to relocate to the L.A. area. All three teams have stadium issues in their current cities, and their respective owners have made plans to build venues in Los Angeles.
The Raiders and Chargers are hoping to build a stadium in Carson, while Rams owner Stan Kroenke has plans for a new stadium in Inglewood. A proposal pushed by Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones that’s gained some traction involves having the Chargers and Rams both play in Inglewood, though the Chargers have remained steadfast in their hopes to share a venue with the Raiders.
“On December 7, the Chargers made clear in writing that we had zero interest in the Inglewood project, and nothing has changed since then,” Chargers special counsel Mark Fabiani said Monday in a statement to USA TODAY Sports.
The proposed stadium in Carson would cost an estimated $1.7 billion to build. Kroenke’s Inglewood stadium would cost closer to $1.9 billion. Neither venue would require public money.
The Committee on Los Angeles Opportunities is comprised of six NFL owners (Clark Hunt, Robert Kraft, John Mara, Bob McNair, Jerry Richardson and Art Rooney) who were expected to make their recommendation on Tuesday morning. In order for any of the three teams to get approved for the move to L.A., they’ll need votes from at least 24 of the league’s 32 owners. Each team that moves to Los Angeles will pay a relocation fee of $550 million.
The NFL left L.A. in 1994 when the Rams moved to St. Louis and the Raiders returned to Oakland, where they had played from 1959-1981. Professional football briefly made its way back to Los Angeles in 2001 with the XFL, but the league folded after just one season. The Los Angeles Xtreme won the championship in the eight-team league.
The teams that are allowed to move to L.A. are expected to start playing there next season. They’ll play in a temporary venue until either the Carson or Inglewood stadiums are completed, which might not happen until 2019. The possible temporary venues include Angel Stadium, Dodger Stadium and the StubHub Center, home to the LA Galaxy.