Leave the expansion idea die alone and sad. The league does not need 34 teams! Things got all confusing there for a while with the Raiders going to L.A., leaving L.A., the Rams going to Anaheim, the Cardinals leaving St. Louis, the Browns running off to Baltimore….. And in the middle of all that we end up with the Jacksonville Jaguars and the Carolina Panthers. A Wait. What? moment if ever there was one; the league is in total chaos so we’re gonna throw two more teams into the mix and maybe people with think that the Oilers are still in Houston. The worst thing that expanding to 32 teams did to the NFL was it diluted the talent pool greatly. How else could you explain Pittsburgh’s own Kordell Stewart and Bubby Brister lasting so long past their ‘sell by dates’ hey, somebody gotta line up under center…). Vinny Testaverde played into his forties because there was not enough competent talent at QB to put Vinny out to pasture. The NFL was great with 30 teams and free agency but it jumped to 32 teams too quickly to realize that gold mine. The promise of free agency was that if your team was in the cellar this year it could, through the draft and a couple of plum free agents, be right back in the mix next year. But within three seasons of free agency really taking hold the league expanded and before you know it that running back that was due to retire was all of a sudden testing the market in free agency (hey, you gotta hand the ball to somebody).
Los Angeles is not a football town and it has proven that over and over. And even if L.A. was a football town, what other city would be in the running for a team? Jacksonville and Carolina have shown that the fans won’t support a team that puts up a few losing seasons in a row. Couple that with the impact those less than stellar economic times has had on the small market teams and disaster could be just around the bend.
It wouldn’t look good for the ‘brand’ or the ‘shield’ to have a ‘franchise’ go out of ‘business’ would it, Roger?