Last week, KLIV Radio reported that NBC Sports has learned that the National Football League is encouraging both the 49ers and the Raiders to play in the proposed Santa Clara Stadium. Will the Raiders and 49ers both call Santa Clara home?
The possibility of the Raiders (or another team) making partial or full use of the Santa Clara Stadium is not really “news.” The E.I.R. and Stadium Term Sheet both allowed for the possibility. The Stadium Term Sheet reads, “49ers Stadium Company will have the right to enter into a sublease with a second NFL team, on terms and conditions consistent with and subject to the stadium lease. Conditions of repayment to the city, forgiveness of advances, and additional revenues to the City of Santa Clara are defined in the term sheet’s outline of conditions.
If the NFL is encouraging both teams to play in the new stadium, why doesn’t the City of Santa Clara invite the NFL to the table and negotiate with them directly? Make the NFL and its huge financial resources a full partner in the program. After all, if two NFL teams make use of the new stadium, why does the City of Santa Clara and its redevelopment agency have to put up one dime?
The NFL generates billions of dollars every year. They could easily afford to finance the public subsidy that Santa Clara is being asked to put forward. What’s more, perhaps the deal could be made even bigger and better.
Consider: Why doesn’t the NFL purchase the Great America amusement park from Cedar Fair and turn it into a football-theme destination for tourists? A West Coast wing of the Football Hall of Fame could be added to the property along with football-theme sports restaurants and shops. (ie Montana’s Steak House, Shula’s, etc).
This new, “NFL Disneyland” complex would be a fantastic showcase for the NFL. The new complex would be the permanent home for the Pro Bowl, home to the “Hall Of Fame Game” (every other year), and a prime location for frequent Super Bowls.
Welcome to NFL’s Great America!