Many people have heard by now that the Oakland Raiders want to move to Las Vegas. In reality, the owner Mark Davis is pushing for the move.
Now, with a move comes many questions, one of which is why make a move? The front runner of reasons seems to be what NFL always relates to; Money. With everything in life, there are pros and cons.
- Las Vegas is a household name when it comes to cities. The location itself might not be large, but it’s draw millions and millions of tourists monthly. It does have a small media market, but there are four markets that are smaller (Green Bay, New Orleans, Buffalo, and Jacksonville), with one of those teams always being a playoff team.
- The soonest the Raiders could play in Las Vegas, considering a decision is made in this upcoming summer, would be 2019. This would be a positive more the fans of Oakland that live in Oakland. Why? Because this gives them two more seasons to show support and in a way plead their case with the owner. Say the move is approved, then the Raiders have back-to-back sellouts and playoffs appearances, it would vastly increase the odds of the owner deciding to stay in Oakland. It would be hard for any owner to walk away from something like that.
- Mark Davis is very passionate about the move. Now, some may wonder why this under the pros side, because technically it would hurt the fans if he strongly believes in it. But, it shows he cares about the franchise and that’s the best thing you can have in an owner. Even if at times his views are the same as the fans, he still cares about said franchise and is willing to go out of his way to help the organization.
- The proposed location of the stadium is on the Vegas Strip. This strip is filled with casinos and bars, mix that with NFL players? It smells of bad ideas. Without Vegas, there are enough arrests and lawsuits in the NFL regarding public conduct of NFL players. Everyone can already see the problems with the bars just alone and a move hasn’t been approved.
- Gambling is looked at as the ultimate sin in sports. Pete Rose, who was caught gambling in the MLB, is still banned from the Hall of Fame to this day. We all know of the gambling stories from Las Vegas. That’s just of normal people. Once again, borrowing from above, add NFL Players (with a boatload of money) into the mix? It doesn’t seem good for the league or the players. Roger Goodell would have to be stricter on the gambling policy, which would then cause the media to launch attacks at Goodell for being too strict. This would also hurt players who would drink and gamble their money away. Of course the argument could be made that it falls on the players to not do that, but when the situation can be avoided, then it should stay avoided.
- As of now, only Mark Davis has said that he wants to make the move. None of the players have come out to support the proposed move. This should be obvious as veterans and rookies alike don’t want to trade away everything they have built in the Oakland community, just to move and start all the way over. This situation seems very similar to the LA Rams move. The players come out saying that they wanted to stay in St. Louis as most, if not all, of the players had been playing in St. Louis all of their careers and were not around when the Rams were in LA. If a move is announced, it would ruin some fan support, mostly the loyal fans, which would drain player moral, which would lead to the lack of Team Chemistry, which then would lead to in-team problems, on and off the field.