Jason La Canfora of CBS Sports reports that there was a “growing sense” among civic leaders in the Bay Area that the NFL’s preference is for the Raiders to remain in Oakland long term.
This comes after NFL commissioner Roger Goodell expressed some optimism that a deal could eventually be worked out to keep the Raiders in Oakland.
“No market should lose their team once let alone twice,” Goodell said of Oakland possibly losing the Raiders again, per Brian Murphy. “I believe there’s a solution in Oakland.”
According to La Canfora, this sentiment is stronger than ever following a recent visit from NFL executive Eric Grubman to Oakland last week.
Ownership sources have indicated to La Canfora that they have a “strong desire” to keep the Raiders in Oakland, even if owner Mark Davis secures public funding for a new stadium to be built in Las Vegas.
Interestingly enough, La Canfora says that there are “strong reservations” as to whether Davis would be able to get the 23 votes he needs to relocate the franchise to Las Vegas.
Meanwhile, Oakland is reportedly viewed by many powerful owners as a far superior market for numerous reasons including: location, population, per capita income and size of the TV market.
According to La Canfora, the league is expected to have officials spending “considerable: time in Oakland throughout the season to aid the process of securing a stadium deal and gauging the progress.
“The municipalities in play (in Oakland) believe the NFL is very sincere about being willing to make the Raiders stay in Oakland if it needs to,” said one of La Canfora’s sources. “That’s the distinct impression they are getting from the league.”
We’ll have more updates regarding the Raiders’ future as the news becomes available.