Los Angeles football fans have been waiting to see the NFL come back to their city after saying goodbye to not one, but two teams in 1995. This may no longer be an idea but a reality, with three teams threatening to move away from their cities into Los Angeles and two proposals of a stadium.
Inglewood Mayor James T. Butts gave the okay for St. Louis Rams owner Stan Kronke to build a stadium in the area, according to a Los Angeles Times article by Tim Logan, Angel Jennings and Nathan Fenno.
Kronke plans to build a 238 acre football stadium in Hollywood Park by the end of the year, the article states.
San Diego Chargers and Oakland Raiders owners Alex Spanos and Mark Davis made the second proposal. Their proposition was to move both teams to Los Angeles and then share the $1.7 billion stadium they will privately fund together in Carson, CA.
However, with so many failed proposals in past years, like A.E.G sports company who pulled out of five years of planning a stadium, how are either of these any different?
“At least for the one in Inglewood, it’s Kronke himself that makes the situation unique,” Los Angeles Times sports writer David Wharton said in a phone interview.
“Certainly the proposal for the Hollywood Park area in Inglewood seems to be different because you have a very wealthy owner who seems willing to put up the money,” Wharton said.
At this point in Kronke’s plan, taxpayers’ dollars wouldn’t have to go into the project since he has already bought the land on an entirely private payroll.
In fact, a USA Today article suggests that many Inglewood citizens are in favor of the build.
“As far as everybody being all in, everybody’s all in,” Butts said.
According to the Los Angeles Times article, “Last month, organizers filed 22,183 signatures, twice as many as needed to put the initiative on the ballot. The Los Angeles County registrar’s office verified 11,490 signatures, surpassing the 9,000 needed to move forward.”
Butts thinks Inglewood will benefit financially from this kind of establishment in the neighborhood, the article continues.
“[Kronke] has taken steps to be part of the ownership of the land and so he’s gotten a little bit farther than previous owners of teams have,” Wharton said.
There is no use in any of these stadiums, though, if there’s no team to play in it.
The NFL’s problem lies in which team will play in it since there are now three teams looking to re-locate: the Rams, the Chargers and the Raiders.
The owners may be misled, though, as Wharton thinks that the NFL may not necessarily be against the move.
“I think the NFL would like to get back to Los Angeles so long as the stadium gets built. In the long run, I don’t think they’d fight it,” Wharton said.
The fans would have to be ready for this change, too. While people love watching the game on television, the only way for the stadium and/or teams to thrive is to have people showing up to the live games and helping turn out profit. Especially since it’s been so long since the city has had a team, most fans have developed a love for other teams that will end up being opponents to any Los Angeles team.
Archer student Vivian Shay ‘20 started the Archer Football Club and is an avid fan of the NFL team the New England Patriots.
“I feel like I would still kind of root for the Patriots because they are my home team,” Shay said. “But I would definitely root for the team that’s in LA, too.”
So while the fans would have teams they already call theirs, they could potentially feel that way about two teams.
“In Los Angeles, the fans are very picky because there’s so many things to do here, in order for the team to keep drawing the crowds the team is going to have to win,” Wharton said.
However, he added that Los Angeles does have a better chance of having a team now than they have in the past.
The NFL nor any of the team’s owners have publicly disclosed their plans.
“The next few years may be a little soon,” Wharton said.
In the eyes of eager football fans, time is a small price to pay to see the sport they love back in their city.