4:00pm: The Chargers have acquired land in Orange County, per Kevin Acee of the San Diego Union-Tribune (on Twitter), and he hears that it is for their headquarters and practice facility. The Bolts issued a statement on the matter (Twitter link via Vincent Bonsignore of the Daily News) and explained that they are simply keeping their options open. Because of the red tape involved in doing such a project, the statement explained, it was necessary for the Chargers to get the ball rolling on that process in the event that they relocate to L.A.
11:44am: A report out of Southern California earlier this week suggested that talks between the Rams and Chargers on a potential stadium partnership had reached an impasse, with the Chargers likely to remain in San Diego for 2016. However, that’s not the case, according to Vincent Bonsignore of InsideSoCal.com, who reports that the Chargers are simply doing their due diligence and completing the number-crunching necessary to fully evaluate the proposal on the table for a potential move to L.A.
Kevin Acee of the San Diego Union-Tribune hears that people around the league continue to believe that the Rams and Chargers will agree to a deal soon. The Chargers would like to have resolution by the end of this week, one source tells Acee, though it’s not clear yet if that goal will be met. Bonsignore heard on Wednesday that, depending on when the situation is resolved, the Rams and Chargers could postpone an announcement until after the Super Bowl, so as not to upstage the NFL’s main event (Twitter link).
Although an agreement looks likely to be reached, Acee cautions that even if the Rams and Chargers agree to a deal in principle, that doesn’t necessarily mean the Chargers will leave San Diego right away. Team and league sources tell Acee that a deal with the Rams is necessary for the Chargers if they intend to try to get a stadium built in San Diego, since it would give the franchise significant leverage.
The Chargers have until next January to officially make a decision on their long-term home, so the club could theoretically play in San Diego for one more season – with a Los Angeles deal in place – and then move to L.A. in 2017 if there’s still no viable San Diego stadium solution on the table by that point.
If the Chargers and Rams strike an agreement, it would be a limited partnership deal, according to Acee. The Rams would take on the majority of the risk, along with the majority of the revenue, while the Chargers would “still realize significant gains over what is available in San Diego.” One league source tells Acee that there’s no downside to the L.A. proposal for the Chargers, while another says it would be a “good-to-great” deal for the team.
Moving to Los Angeles along with the Rams may be more beneficial for the Chargers over the long term, but league sources are unconvinced that owner Dean Spanos is totally on board with the idea yet, with one source telling Acee, “I believe Dean will be very, very unhappy in Los Angeles.” So that’s worth keeping in mind as the Chargers move toward a decision.
Finally, if the Chargers end up in Los Angeles for the 2016 season, they’ll need someplace to play, and sharing the L.A. Coliseum with the Rams looks like the most logical solution to that dilemma. Per an Associated Press report, the Coliseum Commission is meeting today to consider amending USC’s current lease to allow a second NFL team to play at the stadium.
Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.