SBJ/September 5-11, 2011/In Depth

LA bound?

Here are some possibilities on who could be the tenant for an NFL stadium in Los Angeles:

San Diego Chargers
Each year, the team has the option of terminating its lease at Qualcomm Stadium by delivering written notice and a check to the city of San Diego. The amount of the check varies by year and is specified in the team’s lease. The amount in 2012, for example, would be $23 million. The amount goes down by roughly $3 million a year through the 2020 season.

Minnesota Vikings
The team’s lease at the Metrodome expires after this season, though Vikings owner Zygi Wilf has so far remained openly committed to Minnesota. But a team spokesman said in a radio interview last week, “There is growing concern within our ownership, there is no doubt, about where this is headed and the fact that every year, we get to the end of the [legislative] session and there’s a different reason why [it didn’t get done].”

Buffalo Bills
There is no question the Bills are in a rough market, but they may not be Los Angeles bound. Owner Ralph Wilson, 92, has committed to keeping the team in Buffalo while he is alive, and nearby Toronto, which already hosts one game a year, has eyes on the rest of them.

Oakland Raiders
Could the Raiders once again leave Oakland for Los Angeles? A perennial attendance problem for the NFL, the Raiders play in an outdated stadium, which will be the last to host both an NFL and MLB team once the Marlins’ new ballpark is ready.

Jacksonville Jaguars
The Jaguars are always tossed around as a possible candidate to head west, though the team has a long-term stadium lease and owner Wayne Weaver seems committed to the market.

Expansion team
That’s another possibility, adding an expansion franchise, but the NFL has not indicated it is ready to expand.

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