Sometimes it doesn’t take long to get a lot of business taken care of.
NFL owners are going to prove that over the span of less than 24 hours as they converge for an owners meeting in downtown San Francisco that gets underway Tuesday night and finishes up by early Wednesday afternoon.
It may seem like a short period of time, but the owners are going to address some critical issues in their abbreviated conversion to the Bay Area.
Topping the agenda will be discussions from St. Louis, Oakland and San Diego about potentially relocating their franchises to Los Angeles, which has been without a NFL team for more than 20 years since both the Rams and Raiders escaped from L.A. following the 1994 season.
“This is an important meeting,” NFL Executive Vice President Eric Grubman told The Los Angeles Times. “We’ve made a tremendous amount of progress and we really need to lift the veil on the key process steps so membership can go into the summer comfortable with where this might be headed.”
Grubman, who oversees the Los Angeles relocation issue for the NFL, will be introducing representatives from all three teams looking to move to the Los Angeles area. After years of being used as a bargaining chip for owners to get new stadiums in their current locations, three organizations are now competing for a home in L.A. – likely figuring if a NBA team is worth $2 billion in Los Angeles, what is an NFL team worth?
St. Louis owner Stan Kroenke will speak to the owners on his proposal to move the Rams back to L.A. with a new stadium being planned in Inglewood. Representatives of the Raiders and Chargers will make their pitch for a joint stadium for both franchises in Carson. There won’t be any former presentations of the scope of the projects, just a brief overview of their plans and why they are looking to leave their current markets.
The bigger decision for the owners will be setting a timetable for a stadium proposal. There has been talk that the typical window from Jan. 1 to Feb. 15 to submit applications for relocation will be moved into December or even possibly November.
While the relocation of one, two or even three franchises will have fans from those areas of the country paying the most attention to the owners meetings, it won’t be the only topic for discussion.
Patriots owner Robert Kraft is expected to address the owners, whether individually or as a group, concerning the Deflategate situation. No action is expected to come of it other than being the potential starting point for coming up with an alternate source of punishment than having the commissioner serve as judge, jury and arbitrator.
Discussions will also take place on cities looking to host the Super Bowl in the four-year period from 2019-23. It’s unlikely the Vikings will submit another application without having a first Super Bowl in their new stadium. Considering how state-of-the-art the plans are, it wouldn’t be inconceivable to award them a second Super Bowl down the road to make other organizations ramp up their efforts to modernize their own stadiums.
The owners will also be presented with three proposals for extra points. The specialization of the kicker position has made shorter field goals nearly automatic and extra points a virtual certainty. But the owners are saying, “Not so fast, my little friend.”
Three different proposals will be on the table and they have a recurring theme – kicking extra points from the 15-yard line instead of the 2-yard line. One would simply keep the same rules and move the ball to the 15-yard line. A second option would be that the kick would be from the 15, but if a team wants to go for two points, the ball would be placed on the 1-yard line. A third proposal would open up failed extra point attempts of either kind that result in the ball remaining in play with the potential to be returned for two points by the defense on special teams.
Depending on how the discussions go, the owners may vote to have at least one additional owners meeting later in the summer if action is requested on any of the items other than the PAT question, which is expected to be put to a vote and will require a 75 percent approval rate (24 yes votes) to pass.
They may only be meeting for about eight to 10 hours over two days, but NFL owners are going to busy during that period, making decisions that will impact the game and likely the fan bases of at least one, if not three, current NFL franchises.
NFL owners have a lot of work in short period
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