This is not exactly breaking news, but it is further confirmation of what we kind of figured. The NFL owners meetings wrapped up in San Francisco on Wednesday, and featured plenty of discussion about football in Los Angeles.
Oakland Raiders owner Mark Davis fielded numerous questions on the subject, including one on potentially playing at Levi's Stadium. The 49ers lease for the stadium includes a potential for a second tenant, and the Raiders have been frequently mentioned given their own inability to get a new stadium. The Raiders have generally shut that down, but Wednesday was the most explicit statement thus far.
Davis's addressed two problems with sharing Levi's Stadium. The first is that the Raiders would feel like the No. 2 team in the stadium. In his plans with the San Diego Chargers, it is two teams equally invested in the project. The 49ers got everything done for Levi's Stadium, and it is their stadium.
The best example of what the Raiders and Chargers are looking to do can be seen at MetLife Stadium in New Jersey. The Jets and Giants share the stadium, and technology allows them to adjust the colors within the stadium so it reflects the given team. It is not all blue or all green, but rather, can be changed between the colors. I suspect that is what an LA stadium would involve for the Raiders and Chargers.
The other issue was kind of an amusing complaint that makes some sense:
Davis said the commute from Oakland to Santa Clara would take about as long as it would take him to fly to Los Angeles.
"So if we're going to move the team," he said, "let's get something that's going to be for the Raiders."
It is kind of a "first world problem" type of issue, but traffic really is a pain in the butt. And it makes sense to get something that's going to be for the Raiders. Some folks have complained about what a shared stadium would mean with Raiders fans coming in, but I don't think that really matters. First, it's not like they would be playing in the stadium the same day, or even the same week (SNF, MNF type of thing). Second, it's not like Raiders fans have a monopoly on having some unruly folks. The 49ers have their share, so I was never concerned about that aspect of things.
My guess is the Raiders and Chargers end up in LA. The Rams potential project is making good progress, and could be completed before the Raiders/Chargers project in Carson. However, the Rams also seem more likely to get the local St. Louis financial support they can extort, I mean receive, to get a stadium done without relocating.
The NFL has supposedly said they would not put two teams in LA without San Diego being one of them given the pressure it might put on the Chargers if they remain in LA. Right now, the plan that makes the most sense is moving the Raiders and Chargers down there. San Antonio has been mentioned occasionally as an option, but nothing has really come of that. Moving a team there would mix things up even more, but for now, LA seems to be the only viable relocation option.