Raiders will play 2016 season in Oakland
The Oakland Raiders announced an agreement in principle Thursday on a lease extension to play the 2016 season at the O.co Coliseum, though their long-term home remains uncertain.
The deal includes one-year options for the 2017 and 2018 seasons.
“We’ve got a football franchise that wants to be here,” Raiders owner Mark Davis told a news conference.
The lease needs to be approved by the Oakland City Council, the Oakland Alameda County Coliseum Authority and the Alameda County Board of Supervisors, in addition to NFL owners.
But Davis still wants a new stadium. If the San Diego Chargers don’t exercise their option to join the Rams in Los Angeles by Jan. 16, 2017, the Raiders will have an identical one-year option.
Meanwhile, groups interested in building stadiums in Las Vegas and San Antonio have made overtures to the Raiders in recent months.
“If people are going to call you and offer things to look at, you’re going to look,” Davis said. “But my heart is here in Oakland.”
Davis said the Raiders have $600 million to put toward a new stadium in Oakland, including an extra $100 million that league owners promised the team last month when their plan to build a stadium with the Chargers in Carson wasn’t approved.
To help in the quest for a new stadium in Oakland, the Raiders have hired Larry MacNeil, who played a key role for the San Francisco 49ers in the development of Levi’s Stadium, to work with their negotiating team.
Follow Nathan Fenno on Twitter: @nathanfenno
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