During all of the hoopla surrounding the NFL right now, commissioner Roger Goodell said that the NFL could expand to 34 teams in the near future, especially if they add an expansion franchise to the city of Los Angeles. The league currently has 32 teams, and going to an odd number of teams does not appear as an attractive option, at least in the eyes of Goodell.
Speaking to Bob Costas last night on the NBC Sports Network, Goodell said that the league “doesn’t want to move any of our teams.” That would mean that adding one expansion team to Los Angeles to begin play would give them 33, meaning that the league would add another franchise to a city to be named later.
“We probably don’t want to go to 33” teams by adding just one new club if a suitable stadium is built in the Los Angeles area, Goodell said. That part makes sense, as an odd number of teams would result in scheduling nightmares, as well as an uneven amount of teams in one division. If you are dead-set on expanding, then two teams is the only option.
But is expansion necessary?
I still maintain that the more teams you add and the further you expand, the weaker the product becomes.
If you have any doubts about that, feel free to go ahead and take a look at the National Hockey League now, compared to what it was back in the 1980’s and early 1990’s. That was when the NHL was at its’ strongest.
Expansion waters down leagues. It happened in hockey, but it also happened in basketball with the NBA, and baseball in MLB, at least to a lesser degree. The more teams you have, the more players you have. As we have seen from the Cleveland Browns, more teams and more players is not always a good thing. And I apologize to the Dawg Pound, as they just happened to be the first bad team to come to mind.
I am sure that many of you have not even heard about this story. You can’t turn on the television or check the internet or read the newspaper without hearing the same handful of names. Granted, this is also the end of Super Bowl XLVI week, but when is the last time you heard a names outside of Tim Tebow, Rob Gronkowski, Tom Brady, Peyton and Eli Manning or Andrew Luck?
Hey, I’m not complaining. It sure as hell beats having to be subjected to Brett Favre talk again.
Then again, I actually preferred the NFL Lockout talk to that of Favre.
But I still maintain that adding two more teams would not be a good thing. I agree that the city of Los Angeles should have an NFL franchise. It is ridiculous that they lost teams on multiple occasions in the past. But why add another one, when the league already has a few teams who they could simply move?
Moving the St. Louis Rams makes the most sense to me right now. We could just say that the city of St. Louis borrowed the Rams from Los Angeles for a couple of decades. Hey, they won a Super Bowl, and now it is time to return home. Their attendance has not been great, and a move back out west just makes sense.
But if you are against moving the Rams back to Los Angeles to relive the golden days of Jim Everett, I have more options.
The Jacksonville Jaguars have a new owner. They have a new coach. Unfortunately, they have no fans. If they were to move to Los Angeles, it would pose an interesting question.
If a team relocates, but nobody is there to see it or hear about it, does it make a sound?
The Buffalo Bills could be another possibility. At least it would be better than losing them to Canada.
That better not be an option either, Mr. Goodell. Keep all the NFL teams in America, where they belong. Just give them more NHL franchises instead.
If you don’t like any of those suggestions, I have three more.
The Minnesota Vikings ave struggled to secure a stadium for years now. The owner would sell out in a heartbeat. After all, he already sold his soul to the devil when he acquired Favre a few years back.
What about the Oakland Raiders? They are another team who could go home after a long, but short in a way as well, road away.
Finally, the San Diego Chargers could be another option. While I admit it may not seem natural to move the Chargers to Los Angeles, it would save on transportation.
No airlines involved.
Either way, all of the above options beats adding two more expansion franchises.