Developer Ed Roski’s Majestic Realty has narrowed down its wish list of teams to relocate to its planned L.A.-area stadium, with managing partner John Semcken now saying the Buffalo Bills and Jacksonville Jaguars are at the top of the relocation list.
“Jacksonville and Buffalo are two teams in very, very small markets,” Semcken told the Associated Press. “They are teams that have either outdated stadiums or are having trouble filling their stadiums or both.” He added that Majestic won’t contact the San Francisco 49ers, San Diego Chargers or Minnesota Vikings as long as they’re pursuing stadium plans of their own — which is probably just fine with those teams’ owners, as they’ll only want to use L.A. as a bogeyman to help in their hometown stadium demands (or, at most, as a fallback in case those stadium plans fall through).
Of course, market size hasn’t generally been a prime consideration in the NFL, since so much of its revenue comes from national TV contracts and the like, not local sources — which is how L.A. wound up with no teams in the first place, for that matter, since a revenue-packed (for the time, anyway) stadium in middle-sized St. Louis was more appealing than a less-snazzy one in the nation’s second largest city. That may change a smidge under the new revenue sharing rules, but not a ton, so it’s unlikely that either the Bills or the Jaguars will be leaping at this opportunity unless Roski shows them some serious coin in terms of stadium revenue that they’ll be able to get at the new digs.
And that likely means luring two teams to spread out the construction costs a bit, which means getting two owners to stop just using Roski for leverage and actually agree to move to L.A., at least one of whom would have to sell majority ownership to Roski since that’s what he’s insisting on … all of which is to say, just because Roski has filled out his Christmas card list, don’t expect to see flying reindeer in the immediate future.