NFL commissioner, Mayor Slay weigh in on future of Rams

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by Brendan Marks / FootballStL

KMOV.com

Posted on January 31, 2014 at 11:36 AM

Updated Friday, Jan 31 at 5:42 PM

(FootballSTL) – NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell held his annual state of the league address on Friday, and touched on news St. Louis Rams owner Stan Kroenke purchased a large piece of land in Los Angeles potentially big enough to hold a stadium.

Kroenke bought a 60-acre parking lot in Inglewood, California, located between Hollywood Park and the Los Angeles Forum, within the last month. Wal-Mart orginially owned the land, but could not obtain approval to build a superstore.

"While we can confirm media reports that we recently purchased land in Inglewood, as a private company we don't typically discuss our plans for commercial or residential investments," read a statement released Friday by Kroenke Organizations. "We have yet to decide what we are going to do with the property but we will look at all options, as we do with all of our properties."

NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell discussed the subject during the speech.

“(Kroenke) had kept us informed (about the purchase), we’re aware of it. There are no plans to my knowledge of a stadium development,” he said. 

Goodell said anything regarding stadium development would require multiple votes by owners.

“Stan is a very successful developer, he has billions of dollars of projects that are going on around the country,” he said. “Instead of overreacting, we should make sure we do what’s necessary to support the team locally, which the fans have done, and make sure we can do whatever we can to make sure that team is successful in the St. Louis market.”

St. Louis Mayor Francis Slay also weighed in on the news when talking to local media Friday morning.

“It got our attention, and it should,” he said. “This is an important thing to the city of St. Louis. We really enjoy having the Rams here. They’re a great team and we want to do what we can to keep them here.”

Slay, like Goodell, mentioned Kroenke’s successful business ventures as a possible reason for the purchase.

“There’s been no communications, that I’m aware of yet, between the St. Louis region and the state and the Rams about the issue, so I don’t want to speculate about anything, on what it means or even why the property was purchased."

Slay added negotiations for the Rams has been taken over by Missouri Gov. Jay Nixon’s office.

“Certainly, we’re going to be involved, but at this point, it got our attention, don’t know what it means and I guess we’ll have to see,” he said.

Slay said to his knowledge there had not yet been any negotiations between Nixon and the Rams.

A spokesman told News 4 Gov. Nixon had no comment on Kroenke's land purchase.

The Rams’ lease for the Edward Jones Dome in St. Louis ends after the 2014 season.

The Los Angeles area has been without an NFL team since the 1994 season, when the Rams packed up for St. Louis.

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