Raiders, Vikings Among 5 Teams Being Serenaded by AEG to Play in L.A.
The Raiders may be returning to Los Angeles. Or possibly the Rams. AEG president Tim Leiweke confirmed that he has approached five NFL franchises about taking majority ownership of the team and relocating it to AEG's proposed Farmers Field stadium in downtown Los Angeles, according to the OC Register.
The Minnesota Vikings organization is believed to be the most likely candidate to be L.A.'s first NFL team in 16 years. It's seeking a billion dollar stadium proposal -- ostensibly one without a collapsible dome.
Leiweke was in Minneapolis in late May meeting with Vikings officials, according to the NFL Network.
"St. Louis, Jacksonville, not extensively, certainly Oakland, San Diego, Minnesota are still in the mix," Leiweke said in the Register, listing the teams AEG has met with before adding: "We're not packing any (moving) vans right now."
AEG is hoping to open Farmers Field for the 2016 NFL season and is looking for a quick return on its investment in the proposed $1.35 billion Farmers Field and Convention Center renovation. Leiweke said AEG would even pick up the tab if necessary to assist teams in breaking free of existing agreements. The Chargers, for example, would owe $24 million to break its lease and bolt for L.A.
Leiweke does have some football in his blood -- his brother Tod is former CEO of the Seattle Seahawks and current CEO of the NHL's Tampa Bay Lightning.
According to the Register:
AEG and Los Angeles officials are negotiating a ground lease for Farmers Field in the millions annually that will help cover shortfalls in the repayment of $350-million in public bonds for the renovation of the convention center's West Hall.
AEG has asked the city to approve a memorandum of understanding by July 31 for the project to move forward. The Daily News, in an editorial, suggest the city take its time and only agree to the best deal for all Angelenos.