3 NFL Teams Wait in Limbo, Possibly Moving to LA. But Why Would LA Want Any of Them?

Never finance billionaires' vanity projects with public money.


The fanbases of the St. Louis Rams, Oakland Raiders and San Diego Chargers wait in limbo, unsure if last week was the last home game they'll ever see their beloved teams play in their current cities.

All three NFL franchises have expressed an interest in moving to Los Angeles, a very large media market that has done perfectly fine without a professional football team for two decades, but that hasn't stopped the predictable efforts of the league and its billionaire owners to push for publicly-financed stadiums to keep teams from relocating. 

As Deadspin's Barry Petchesky wrote last summer:

You don't even have to be particularly cynical to believe the NFL doesn't actually want a team in Los Angeles—it just loves having the helpful L.A. bogeyman around to blackmail cities into throwing taxpayers' millions at owners to get them to stay. 

In a 2014 interview with Reason TV, ESPN columnist and author of The King of Sports: Football's Impact on America Gregg Easterbrook said, "The NFL is good at fleecing taxpayers…It's about a billion dollars a year I've calculated in public subsidies to NFL owners and this is a group that consists almost entirely of billionaires and yet receiving significant public subsidies every year."

As the 2015 NFL regular season wraps up tomorrow, it's worth remembering that billionaire crony capitalists do not have your best interests at heart and that the promised economic benefits of public-financed sports stadiums almost never come to pass