The long 20-year National Football League drought in Los Angeles is finally nearing an end. And while it’s looking more and more likely the Rams will be returning to the region they called home from 1946 to 1994 – and they’ll be joined in Inglewood by the San Diego Chargers – the Raiders and Chargers remain committed to each other and Carson.
And that sets up a wild next couple of days in Houston, where NFL owners have gathered to finally decide who relocates to Los Angeles and to what site. The league is expected to officially vote on the matter on Wednesday. The winning bid requires 24 votes.
The momentum for a Chargers and Rams partnership in Inglewood has been building all weekend. The catalyst being Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones officially submitting the possibility to the NFL as an alternative to the Chargers and Oakland Raiders Carson stadium project and the Rams Inglewood proposal.
In doing so, Jones became the influential voice needed to suggest Rams owner Stan Kroenke and Chargers owner Dean Spanos work out a compromise. That was a possibility that’s been bandied about behind the scenes throughout the process, but until someone within the league stepped up and suggested it – and in Jones’ case submit it as an actual proposal – the Chargers were never going to budge from their position with the Raiders and Kroenke was never going to put himself in a position where he would be seen as trying to break them up.
Now that the proposal is officially out there, more and more owners are beginning see it as a legitimate possibility according to sources. More importantly, it seems to have enough juice to be one of the proposals NFL owners will vote on in Houston.
And according to a league official, if the six-owner Los Angeles Opportunities committee makes an official recommendation, it will be the Chargers and Rams in Inglewood.
Nevertheless, sources from the Chargers and Raiders insist they remain committed to each other and will approach the next two days with every intention of winning.
Spanos has maintained all along he won’t betray Raiders owner Mark Davis, but he’s also been clear he will abide by whatever the NFL decides.
Expect Spanos to continue to hold firm on his position, in part to hold out for a Carson win but also to work out the best possible deal with Kroenke and to protect Davis. But if the NFL ultimately decides it wants a Rams Chargers solution, Spanos might not have a choice but to agree.
And it seems like that’s exactly where this might all be headed.