Rose Bowl nixes hosting NFL team, L.A. temporary stadium options down to Coliseum or playing in street

The Pasadena-controlled board that owns the Rose Bowl voted this week not to bid to provide a temporary home to an NFL team in Los Angeles, saying they would rather host an annual music festival instead. (The music festival wouldn’t be during the NFL season, but its environmental impact statement requires that the Rose Bowl not host pro football if the festival takes place.)

This still leaves the NFL with a bunch of options, but as the Los Angeles Times’ Sam Farmer and Nathan Fenno report, they’re all problematic. Dodger Stadium and Angel Stadium are baseball stadiums, and not only does the NFL hate playing in baseball stadiums, but baseball teams hate sharing digs with football, which messes up their schedule and tears up the grass. The Los Angeles Galaxy‘s StubHub Center in Carson only holds 27,000 — though NFL stadium consultant Marc Ganis tried to put a happy face on this to the L.A. Times, saying, “There’s something interesting about playing in a smaller facility, to start with creating a scarcity of tickets and increase the level of interest early on,” yeah, right — and is run by AEG, which already has no love for the NFL after having its own downtown L.A. stadium plan shot down.

That leaves the L.A. Coliseum, which would be fine but for two things: First off, USC’s lease on the Coliseum only allows it to host one NFL team, which would be a problem if, say, both the Raiders and Chargers needed temporary homes while waiting for a new stadium to be completed. Second, it’s really hard to get a bidding war going with only one serious bidder, so any team wanting to bunk at the Coliseum temporarily likely just saw its prospective rent go up.

This probably isn’t enough to be more than a speed bump en route to a new L.A. NFL stadium (and team), but given that the finances of such a project already look shaky enough, you never know which is going to be the speed bump that breaks the camel’s back. (Yeah, I know the metaphor doesn’t really make sense, work with me here.) The fight to be the future home of the Raiders, Chargers, and Rams still seems like a battle that no one can possibly win — it’s one reason I don’t expect any resolution soon, but I guess we’ll get some hints, maybe, following the August owners’ meetings.

8 comments on “Rose Bowl nixes hosting NFL team, L.A. temporary stadium options down to Coliseum or playing in street

  1. One of the problems is that this same committee, only ten years ago, commissioned an Environmental Impact Report on the feasibility of hosting an NFL team and declared it to be viable, and the league said it wasn’t interested then. But now it is? Sorry, but they are ten years too late.

    On the one hand, the NFL is desperate to get back into the L.A. market. But on the other hand, it seems to still want to play the game of leverage and strong arm tactics to get it perfect, while trying to tell L.A. that’s not what it’s been doing. People around here aren’t as easy to fool. They need to knock this off, or they won’t be welcomed back.

  2. Kudos to you as I have read at least 3 other articles on this but you were the first to note the environmental impact aspect to the story. Frankly, I’m astounded that a music festival would think to have a stipulation like that in there. That sounds like somebody with the music festival has been paying a lot of attention to the talks of NFL teams moving to LA.

    But beyond all that, the NFL would be a horrible tenant for any stadium on a temporary basis like they want here. Their list of demands would be huge (they asked Pasadena to present THEM with a proposal to give just one example of how much their intent was going to be to have the tail wagging the dog) and you know that Goodell and the NFL owner would be talking non-stop about how much better their stadium under construction would be than the Rose Bowl or whatever stadium they were using for the short term. No landlord likes to have the renter talking non-stop about how the place is a dump.

  3. The NFL is all about talking up the ‘presumed interest’ of host cities. There is just an assumption that a city would do anything just to be considered for franchise location (the city itself doesn’t own it, of course, it just gets to pay some of the bills associated).

    I commend LA for refusing to show serious interest in committing tax dollars to a welfare for billionaires program. Other cities should follow suit, in relation to all sports.

    Not a single franchise would go out of business… but the businesses themselves would have to change to adapt to their new financial model (no tax dollars). And they would.

  4. Has Oakland figured out how they are going to finance the improvements in 2030 to the new stadium the Raiders are demanding now? It will be out of date and Mark Davis will be visiting London…

  5. Mr. deMause, you are starting to sound like you believe we really care about moving a team to L.A. I’ve come to expect that sort of thinking from yokel city council members, not you.

  6. Mr. Piggy, whether you really care about moving or not, I thought you would still like to have the viable threat of moving, which this Rose Bowl news makes more difficult.

    Speaking of which, things aren’t looking great for Angel Stadium, either:

  7. Angel Stadium as a temporary home for an NFL franchise is laughable. Their’s no way that could’ve happen. What person thought that was possible? Sure football can be played at any baseball-only stadium but for a short-term? Four years? Not a good idea.

  8. The other thing to keep in mind is that it was the NFL that was asking the Rose Bowl to send THEM a “request for proposal”, which on the face of it is disingenuous at best. Besides the concerns of the residents and whatever the Environmental Impact Report might say, what demands would the NFL have made on the Rose Bowl to make it feasible to use the place for two years? And how, after twenty years of the NFL using the threat to move a team to L.A. as leverage, can anyone interpret that Request For Proposal as anything OTHER THAN an attempt to start a bidding war? The Rose Bowl Operating Committee simply didn’t see the NFL as being worth the trouble OR the risk, and I think they were right.