Scott Davis reports on Disney’s Iger Helping the Oakland Raiders In Los Angeles

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Part II: More on Iger the NFL, the Raiders, and Chargers in Los Angeles…

Continued…Iger shared information a number of related topics including his participation and his ideas specific to how to league should return to the country’s 2nd largest big city market.

Here’s a brief from Iger on exactly why it was that he decided to get more deeply involved with a team or teams moving to LA: “I think it would be great for the community to have an NFL team. It’s high time that we have that. I really was interested in the civic side of this. But I’ve also thought about my life post-Disney and how I would spend my time and my energy. The opportunity to be involved with either an NFL team, or in this case two NFL teams and a stadium project, and using my experience that I’ve obviously gained from Disney over these years to successfully move two teams here, I thought that would be a great next step for me.” Long story short Disney’s is in LA and it would be possibly mutually beneficial for the NFL to be there as well.

Iger was asked what it is that he delivers by being involved in this situation: “When you run the Walt Disney Co., you gain a fair amount of experience in customer-facing businesses, particularly in site-based entertainment. I have a lot of experience in marketing, a lot of experience in selling, particularly tickets to site-based entertainment or movies or whatever. “I have tremendous brand experience. What I do a lot for Disney is manage the great brands of this company, whether it’s Disney, ESPN, ABC, Pixar, Marvel, ‘Star Wars.’ And I’m very engaged in technology and its impact on the consumer, either what experience you deliver for them or how to market and sell to them.”

When pressed on the Carson project specifically: “There’s a tremendous amount of support for Carson. What I’m trying to do is articulate not just the vision for the project itself but the values of Carson and the specific value of two teams moving at once as well as the value of the project itself and the location.”

Iger was the asked about the relevance or importance of Orange County California: “Orange County is a big, important market, and a football market too, particularly for the Chargers. So I think Carson is really well located to attract people both from L.A .County and Orange County and even possibly north San Diego County, particularly on a Sunday, when traffic is less of an issue.”

He went on to speak his thoughts on defines as “repositioning” the brand of the Oakland Raiders: “I think it’s incumbent upon us to make sure it doesn’t scare people away, in how you portray yourself, how you present yourself to the public is one way to do that. And I think with a large new stadium where you have the ability to attract a real diverse fan base, diverse geographically, diverse ethnically and diverse from an age perspective, I think you have a shot at doing that.”

Careful Mr. Iger, that could be taken as a shot at the current fan base that fills the stadium in Alameda county.

Iger went for the safe neutral answer when asked about which NFL he prefers to see in the Los Angeles marketplace: “I’m a big believer in theatricality, so if you’re going to bring the NFL back to a market this big, this important, then do it big. And two is much bigger than one and I really think it would create such a level of excitement and interest in the NFL in Los Angeles that it would do a world of good not just to the league but the teams.”

Perhaps the biggest question other than which teams may make the move is “when”: “I am gaining more and more confidence that the league … believes it is time to move a team or teams to L.A. I feel that they now hear the footsteps, to use a football analogy, and that the league believes it’s good for them to do it now. They’ve debated it and considered it for a long time, and now it’s time.”

Scott Davis reports on Disney’s Iger Helping the Oakland Raiders In Los Angeles

Scott Davis former NFL Raider Has More On The Oakland Raiders Moving Back To The L.A. Market

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Not much time is left in 2015 for the NFL‘s  to get a NFL franchise to return to the LA market. At least not for the 2016 season. Enter once more  the Disney Chairman and Chief Executive Robert Iger who is doubling down on his determination to bring the San Diego Chargers and Oakland Raiders Los Angeles.

Iger is not shy about making his efforts and feelings known. “I’ve been selling hard,” Iger said Thursday as he shared his first public statements on the matter. For those not aware the Chargers and Raiders publicized his in November he was involved in an effort to move the two NFL teams to a new- not yet built stadium- in Carson California.

It is an interesting situation to be sure. Iger, who has 2 years left on his contract with Disney, has emphatically agreed to step in and spearhead the NFL efforts if in fact the League owners select Carson instead of the Inglewood stadium proposal sought by St. Louis Rams owner Stan Kroenke. Part of an Iger-NFL deal stipulates he would only take$1 in salary in such a partnership but would receive an ownership stake in the Chargers and Raiders. Very interesting indeed.

Apparently Iger is a longtime NFL fanatic and has stated he had been a Packer fan since a he was a young boy. And if anyone were to question his love for the Green Bay Packer he’ll just point to the bust of Hall of Fame coach Vince Lombardi he has just outside his Disney headquarters office.

Iger was available to multiple media outlets past Thursday where Disney has its Burbank, California Headquarters. He gave a 30 minute interview with print reporters. Iger stated he was originally approached by the Carolina Panthers owner Jerry Richardson, while meeting with him in L.A. this past summer.

According to Iger the gist of that conversation went like this…”He (Richardson) asked whether I’d be interested in helping very specifically the partnership of the Raiders and Chargers move to L.A., develop a stadium, reposition themselves here”. “I engaged in conversations with Jerry, and then with both entities.”

So that relationship may possibly ruffle some feathers throughout the league based on the fact that Richardson is a member of the Committee on Los Angeles Opportunities, which is composed of six owners who make recommendations to the other 26 owners around the NFL. Can you csay conflict of interest? It is -or was- generally assumed that these committee members are neutral, objective, whatever. Richardson has openly claimed he backs the Carson project.

Iger say however that he did not immediately inform the league he had had those early conversations with Richardson. “When Jerry approached me, he asked for some degree of confidentiality. I didn’t discuss it until much later with the league.”

The NFL has January 12-13 on the calendar to hold a special meeting in Houston when owners could vote on weather or not the St Louis Rams, San Diego Chargers and Oakland Raiders have fulfilled their respective relocation requirements. They will also vote on various aspects of the two L.A. plans. For such plans to pass muster, any such initiative requires the approval of a three-quarters majority of NFL owners, which means 24 votes. Iger is not saying definitively if he will attend the Houston meetings.

More on Iger the NFL, the Raiders, and Chargers in the Next Blog…

Scott Davis former NFL Raider Has More On The Oakland Raiders Moving Back To The L.A. Market

Scott Davis on Running Back Free Agency, Oakland Raiders | Oakland Raiders coach Del Rio wants Trent Richardson to Recapture ‘hunger like you had at Alabama’

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Mark Ingram, Trent Richardson and Eddie Lacy on the Alabama Football team in 2010, all on the depth chart as running backs. The New Orleans Saints Ingram went to the Pro Bowl last season, Green Bay Packers Lacy reached 1,000 rushing yards in each season as a professional and Cleveland Browns 2012 NFL Draft pick Richardson is in many circles a pricey bust for the money.

In three seasons at Alabama however the stats read… Ingram rushed for 3,261 yards, Richardson 3,130 and Lacy 2,402. No one would have imagined he would now be so unproductive compare to his two former college teammates. But America loves a comeback.

Richardson has a new NFL home in the Oakland Raiders. The Raiders also have a new coach in Jack Del Rio. Del Rio believes in Richardson and feels he\ can regain his edge, tap into that great talent and kick-start his career produce the results he did in his heyday at Alabama. Del Rio seems to feels quite strongly that it’s a mental hurdle that can be conquered.

Del Rio said of the conversation with Richardson, “My challenge to him was: ‘Look, I don’t want you to worry about anything other than coming in here and competing your butt off every day. Come in here and be a great teammate, come in here and find a role on special teams, come in here and just grind every day with a hunger like you had as a freshman at Alabama. I really believe if he can recapture that, then he has a chance to maximize that potential. And that potential is great, but why worry about what it may turn into? Let’s just work day to day, being a great teammate, being unselfish, working your tail off every day and see where it takes you.”

Richardson was let go by the Colts on March 12 and became a Raider on March 17. A confident and energized Richardson said, in the small space of time between teams, that “My next step, I’ll be the starter.”

Del Rio said Oakland’s running backs are contending for their respective roles in the Raiders’ offense. Oakland began official offseason training this Monday with strength and conditioning work last week.

Latvius Murray carried the ball just 6 times in Oakland’s first 10 games last year. But he broke out in the final 6 games of the season to earn himself the role as the starting running back by seasons end. In the last six games of the 2014 season, he ran for 413 yards and two touchdowns on 76 carries and caught 14 passes for 124 yards.

The Raiders also brought in free agent running back Roy Helu this past month. Helu rushed 40 times for 216 yards and one touchdown and caught 42 passes for 477 yards and two touchdowns for the Redskins in 2014.

Richardson gained 519 yards on the ground including 3 touchdowns on 159 carries and caught 27 passes for 229 yards in 2014 with the Colts.

Del Rio wants these guys to compete for the position going into the 2015 season. “I think having some solid depth, having guys in there that have done it, that can step up in protection, that can be reliable targets getting out of the backfield on third down, those are important qualities. Adding the ability to cover kicks and do things on special teams, that’s important. Not everybody can be the guy that scores the touchdown. We have other things that have to be done and we’re going to ask our guys to be unselfish, to play hard and play together. We just talked about three good players that will have a chance to compete for their roles and create opportunities for themselves to be heavily involved.”

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Scott Davis on Running Back Free Agency, Oakland Raiders | Oakland Raiders coach Del Rio wants Trent Richardson to Recapture ‘hunger like you had at Alabama’

Scott Davis L.A. Times – Good Times | Oakland Raiders In the Los Angeles Market Mix for New NFL Staduim

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Sourced for Article by Sam Farmer

The world-class backdrop at the Arizona Biltmore, a Waldorf Astoria in Phoenix, set a casual tone, but the NFL’s 32 team owners were all business dressed in professional attire for three days of closed-door sessions.

One topic on the schedule, garnering more serious attention as of late, is the absence of a professional football team (and stadium) in the Los Angeles California market.

It would appear, even to the casual onlooker, that what has been a loosely discussed concept is fast gaining traction and is becoming more of a matter of a reality than a mere passing conversation to be swept under the carpet..

A stadium in the LA market was the subject and focus of an hour-plus proposal to team owners culminating in detailed talks on the Inglewood stadium proposal and the opposing version for Carson. Owners who once shrugged off queries about a team and stadium in Los Angeles showed deeper interest and responded with thoughtful and enthusiastic answers about the looming issue.

Robert Kraft, owner of the Patriots and a member of the league’s committee on Los Angeles opportunities, was optimistic about there being two teams in L.A. within next year.

“We have some real good options,” Kraft said. “And now we’ll see what happens in the end game.”

John Mara of the Giants, also on the committee, wasn’t about to go so far as to say there would be two teams, but specified that the likelihood of reestablishing a NFL presence in L.A. is just a matter of time.

Jerry Jones of the Cowboys, who is confident on an Inglewood stadium, said, “A deal is in the crosshairs.”

It hasn’t happened yet but the NFL is getting closer every day to a presence in L.A. The big difference today is that instead of stadiums and other supporting or surrounding venues being proposed by non-NFL franchise owners, the owners themselves are now taking the lead and actively supporting stadium proposals.

“The developers can do all they want, but until the owner of a team wants to go out there, it’s not going to happen,” said Woody Johnson of the Jets at the owners’ annual meeting.

Stan Kroenke of the St Louis Rams has taken it a step further and has released comprehensive plans for a forward-looking stadium on 298 acres at Hollywood Park in Inglewood. Knoenke claims to have the necessary rights in place to begin construction as soon as this year. Kroenke, the NFL’s second wealthiest team owner, isn’t reliant on a second team to help finance a $1.8-billion stadium on his proposed site which is the old Hollywood Park racetrack. The project would include a concert venue, residential units, a number of restaurants, office space, and retail.

Dean Spanos of the Chargers and Oakland Raiders Mark Davis want to develop a sports complex on 168 acres in Carson, and they are just weeks from having the same rights.

The Rams, Chargers and Raiders do not find any comfort in the fact that they are playing in dated stadiums and in some instances are deteriorating physically. With year-to-year leases moving either or all three organizations is much more feasible.

Eric Grubman, the NFL’s Executive Vice President, said “We have a good chance of getting back to Los Angeles soon, but I cannot speculate on exactly who, how or when,” Grubman was appointed by Commissioner Roger Goodell in part to specifically oversee the L.A. market. “There are too many variables that we don’t control, so if you guess now, you have a high probability of being wrong.”

See various proposed renderings of a new LA stadium

It is highly unlikely any team will make any such move this season, but there is a very real possibility of a team or two moving to L.A. for 2016. There is a 2 month window in which an NFL organization can submit a relocation request and that timeline falls between January and February. That would preclude any team from such as request in 2015 except there have been murmurs about the NFL agreeing to accept such formal requests outside the typical two month window to allow teams to make such decisions prior to the beginning of 2016..

The three cities most in danger of losing their NFL teams aren’t laying down and are making serious efforts to keep their teams in place.

St. Louis has offered up plans for a $985-million stadium along the Mississippi River, and is developing strategies on how to secure the land and the hundreds of millions in public funds to bankroll the project.

San Diego has pinpointed a piece of land close to the Chargers’ current stadium. A group selected by the mayor is slotted to present a funding proposal by May. Team representatives are pessimistic about getting public support to subsidize the building of such a project.

The Raiders are in a holding pattern waiting for a response from the developer representing the city of Oakland and Alameda County. Early indicators suggest a feasible proposal is a long-shot.

With three teams and two stadium concepts being considered in the L.A. metro market, there are over two dozen possibilities. A couple are as follows…

Rams and Raiders sharing a stadium

Oakland Raiders owner Mark Davis has an emotional tie to Hollywood Park, where his father wanted to develop a stadium. Informal surveys indicate the Rams are the most popular of the three teams in the L.A. market, followed by the Raiders.

The Oakland organization is not in good shape financially and would therefore benefit from forging a shared deal with the Rams.

Spanos however would likely attempt to block any such moves to L.A. as it would weaken his position and hamper the leverage needed to get a stadium deal in San Diego.

Chargers and Raiders share a stadium

This scenario avoids moving the Rams back to play in California which would place four NFL teams in the State.

The Raiders hurdles are high for getting any substantial traction on a new stadium in the Oakland area which offers additional promise for a Carson deal.

The Carson site would be conveniently location for fans from both L.A. and Orange County, and would have abundant space for tailgating.

The site however, was once a toxic landfill and although much cleanup work has been done, there I much more to do. Additionally, the Rams Raider fans are not fans of one another.

If the Raiders were to go it alone

The Raiders would get their new home, and St. Louis and San Diego would keep their teams.

The NFL however seems to continue to feel the Raiders are one of the league’s most polarizing teams and sense it may be unreasonable to expect that the team could pull in the revenue needed to pay for a stadium. Their ability to attract corporate and premium customer support is suspect as well, according to some within the NFL.

It’s also fair to question whether the NFL would willingly hand over the L.A. market to Mark Davis based on his father’s history of litigation against the NFL over who owned the rights to L.A.

Either way it’ll be fun to see it play out over the next few years!

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Scott Davis L.A. Times – Good Times | Oakland Raiders In the Los Angeles Market Mix for New NFL Staduim

Scott Davis California LA Raiders |Oakland Raiders Unlikely to Draft Quarterback in 2015

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By Chase Ruttig

In the 2013 and 2014 NFL Drafts the Oakland Raiders used picks outside of the first round to bring in a quarterback prospect to varying success, finding their QB of the future last year in the second round in Derek Carr while their 2013 fourth round pick in Tyler Wilson didn’t make it one year with the team as he was sent to the practice squad before being picked up on waivers in his rookie year with Oakland.

If you count 2013 UDFA signing Matt McGloin, the Raiders have brought in three rookie quarterbacks in two offseasons, two of those players starting games in their rookie years with the team. However in 2014 it is likely that the team will be passing on a quarterback with their 2015 Draft picks for the first time in three years after finding their future in Derek Carr along with securing a quarterback depth chart that the team is comfortable with.

Bringing in Christian Ponder as a backup to pair with McGloin, it is looking like the Raiders have three quarterbacks they can trust this year and most importantly two backups who would be reliable options in a worst case scenario in which Carr could not make a start. That means it is unlikely to see general manager Reggie McKenzie do any further tinkering in the draft at quarterback, finally having the ability to address other needs without worrying about the team’s situation under center during the weekend of the draft.

Bleacher Report’s Mike Tanier has the Raiders listed as the 23rd team most likely to draft a quarterback in the 2015 NFL Draft, giving them a 7.5% chance of selecting a passer even if the team appear to be set with a Carr/McGloin/Ponder trio going forward. The third year McGloin serving more than enough purpose as a quarterback with upside in the stable behind Carr for the time being.

It should be a relief for fans that the team no longer needs to try to win the lottery with quarterbacks in the draft each year, finally having what they feel is their answer at the position in Carr who showed great potential as well as leadership abilities during his rookie season. That lack of need for a QB allows the team to address other holes in the draft, something that the team desperately needs to do as the current Raiders roster is still an incomplete one even if it is getting better each passing offseason.

Don’t rule out something out of left field with the Raiders or any team in the NFL if they feel they have the best pick available at a position that isn’t necessarily a need, but it could be a safe bet to guarantee that Oakland will not be in the rookie quarterback market. Something that you couldn’t say many times over the past decade plus before Carr’s rookie season. Now the team’s attention goes to other areas first, and it is about time for a franchise that has had horrendous luck with quarterbacks since Rich Gannon to have a steady presence at the position with no need to go into the draft looking for a player who *could* be their passer of the future.

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Scott Davis California LA Raiders |Oakland Raiders Unlikely to Draft Quarterback in 2015

Scott Davis see Raiders Beating the Odds | Jack Del Rio wants to coach Raiders where he grew to love them — in Oakland

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Article by David Steele

PHOENIX — Jack Del Rio is only the latest in a long line of Raiders coaches who had to work around the endless discussion about if, or when, the team is leaving Oakland.

For him, though, it’s personal.

Jack Del Rio, Mark Davis (Getty Images)

MORE: Falcons lose draft pickKroenke reveals two-team L.A. stadium plan | Mock Draft 

“I grew in the East Bay. I grew up with the Raiders. I would very much love to come back and coach the team and have the team stay right here,’’ Del Rio told the Sporting News at the NFL annual meetings.

However, the new head coach knows, as his predecessors did, that it’s out of his control, and he knew it when he took the job in January after three years as the Broncos’ defensive coordinator, and nine years before that as the Jaguars head coach. Del Rio was born in Castro Valley, Calif., and raised in Hayward, both just a few BART train stops away from the then-Oakland Coliseum.

Understandably, the relocation talk was on his mind when he was hired.

“When I asked the owner (Mark Davis) point-blank, ‘Tell me about that,’” Del Rio recalled, “he just said, ‘Look, my intention is to have us stay in Oakland. That’s what I’m working hard to do.’ That’s where I left it; I didn’t continue to pry, I didn’t ask a ton of what-if questions. That’s what he’s articulated to me, he’s reiterated that, so to me, I’m taking him at his word.’’

The league meetings began with yet another report about the future of the franchise, in which Rams owner Stan Kroenke’s plan for a two-team stadium in Los Angeles would eventually land the Raiders in St. Louis.

It’s not something that can consume him, Del Rio said.

“Obviously there’s a business side as an organization. I’m aware of all that, but I don’t spend a lot of time worrying about all those things,’’ he said. “I’ve learned long ago, playing and coaching in this league for 30 years, you stay in your lane and take care of your business. There’s plenty to worry about right there. Let the other people worry about (those) things.’’

The potential for instability hasn’t affected him getting comfortable with Davis and general manager Reggie McKenzie, Del Rio said, or the team operating early in free agency. With one of the largest amounts of cap space in the NFL to start with, the Raiders have brought in Rodney Hudson, the best center available, plus defensive tackle Dan Williams, safety Nate Allen and running backs Trent Richardson and Roy Helu Jr.

“Everybody that came in and visited with us signed with us,’’ Del Rio said, “so they could feel the vibe, they could feel the energy, they could see the energy taking place on the field.’’

And as far as he can tell, the energy isn’t aimed to the south or Midwest. But again, as much as he’d like to see his hometown team stay in his hometown, he knows it’s out of his hands.

“It is somebody else’s area,’’ he said. “My job is to coach the team. I can coach wherever I am.’

Scott Davis see Raiders Beating the Odds | Jack Del Rio wants to coach Raiders where he grew to love them — in Oakland

Scott Davis LA Raider picks top news: Marcus Mariota in Play in NFL Draft?

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Despite the presence of second-year quarterback Derek Carr, would the Oakland Raiders consider selecting Marcus Mariota in the NFL Draft?

by Brandon Katz

March 24, 20015

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Most NFL observers were thoroughly impressed with Oakland Raiders quarterback Derek Carr’s rookie season. Carr, who was taken with the 36th overall pick, started all 16 games last year and threw for more than 3,000 yards with 21 touchdowns and 12 interceptions. His success was considered even more impressive given the lack of offensive talent on Oakland’s roster.

While most expect the Raiders to select a wide receiver with the fourth overall pick – either Alabama’s Amari Cooper or West Virginia’s Kevin White – ESPN Insider John McTigue believes the team should go in a different direction.

“But the projections indicate that Oregon quarterback Marcus Mariota also could be available at No. 4 come April 30,” McTigue wrote. “Given the option, the Raiders shouldn’t look to upgrade the supporting cast for their quarterback – they should look to upgrade the quarterback.”

Carr may not have had the rookie season of Andrew Luck, but he certainly inspired a little hope in this dormant franchise. Why would the Raiders go out and replace him after such a promising start?

McTigue digs into the numbers to answer that question.

“A deeper dive into Carr’s numbers suggest his 2014 season left a lot to be desired, however. Carr finished the season with a 38.4 Total QBR, which ranked 28th out of 33 qualified quarterbacks. His QBR didn’t rank favorable among other recent rookies, either. Of the 27 rookies to qualify since 2006 – as far back as Total QBR data goes – Carr’s QBR ranks 15th, sandwiched between EJ Manuel (38.4) and Geno Smith (35.9).

“Carr’s QBR suffered because of minimal gains made on his passes. He averaged a mere 5.46 yards per attempt last season, which was not only worst in the NFL last season, it was one of the worst all time.”

Some of Carr’s conservative passing can be attributed to a lack of help around him. No Raiders wide receiver topped the 693 yards produced by Andre Holmes. No Raiders running back out-rushed Darren McFadden’s 534 yards. Carr contributed to his low totals by playing it safe on most throws, but it’s incredibly difficult to succeed when no one around you is making plays. It’s hard to blame Carr for not taking shots downfield on every play.

Will Carr develop further or has he shown the Raiders his ceiling? McTigue seems to think it’s the latter.

“There have been 44 quarterbacks to make their first 16 NFL starts since 2006 (not including Carr), and the average difference in QBRR from their first 16 starts and their career totals is just 5.1 points.”

McTigue’s statistical analysis is enough to convince him that the Raiders should take a flyer on Mariota’s upside instead of trying to develop Carr.

“Mariota carries the potential of a franchise quarterback, something Carr has yet to displa at either level. In college Carr logged three full seasons as Fresno State’s quarterback and never posted a QBR season higher than 77.0. By comparison, Mariota’s worst QBR in three seasons as Oregon’s starter was 86.2.”

What do you think, Raiders fans? Should Oakland select Mariota if he’s there at No. 4? Or, should the team ride it out with Carr and see what the young passer has got? Let us know in the comments section below.

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Scott Davis LA Raider picks top news: Marcus Mariota in Play in NFL Draft?