This is an archived version of a Field of Schemes article. Comments on this page are closed. To find the current version of the article with updated comments, click here.
February 03, 2009
Goodell: Everybody gets a new stadium!!!
NFL commissioner Roger Goodell had a busy weekend. In between watching some football game, he took time out to address the stadium situation of three of his league's teams. Needless to say, in no case did he say, "Enh, they're fine where they are":
NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell conceded Friday that the 49ers and Raiders stadiums must be replaced, and he said that a shared stadium facility may be the best option in a credit challenged economy racked by recession and job losses.
Asked whether he and the NFL have determined that a joint stadium should replace the decaying Oakland Coliseum and Candlestick Park, Goodell said, "The point that you point out here is that this facility is badly needed in the Bay Area. We have asked both teams to evaluate the possibility of a shared stadium.
"We can't come to a conclusion right now if that's the best option. And in these times, when it's more challenging to get these stadiums built, we have to be more creative."
Nice touch with the "decaying," there - usually the adjective of choice is "crumbling" or "outmoded," but the stench of maggots really gives some extra zest to the image.
In any case, the real news here is that 1) the NFL has sided with the two-team option as the best bet for a new Bay Area stadium, and 2) they still don't have a clue who'd pay for it. Goodell mentioned the New York Jets and Giants stadium as a precedent, but that was able to draw off league suite revenues under the now-defunct G3 program; without outside aid, it's not clear whether the Raiders and 49ers would be any better able to make money going halfsies at a new stadium than building one apiece. In which case, you'd think they might be just as well staying put - but we can't have that, can we, Commissioner?
"I know [owners] Zygi Wilf and Mark Wilf want to continue to have the Minnesota Vikings in Minnesota in a new stadium and I share that," Goodell said during his state of the NFL address in Tampa, Fla. "They have worked very hard to be able to get to that point. They have understood the priorities of the community, they have stood by and they've allowed the baseball stadium and the Gophers [football] stadium to move forward because they recognize those priorities and there are always priorities in the community.
"I think we have to continue to work with the governor and the leadership in that community to understand those priorities and figure out how we get a new stadium built. That is necessary for the Vikings. We all want the Vikings to be there in the long term, successfully. They need a new stadium, that's clear. I think it's recognized by all parties and we need to get down to the difficult business of figuring out how to do it."