Despite months of speculation and multiple derailing obstacles, it has finally happened. As of March 27, 2017, Las Vegas will be more than just Sin City. It will also become the destination of thousands of football fans who come to watch the NFL and root for or against the Las Vegas Raiders. The team was approved by NFL owners 31-1 votes to relocate, departing from their longtime home in Oakland.
Owner Mark Davis and the 30 other NFL owners approved the move of the franchise, with only Miami Dolphins owner Stephen M. Ross in opposition. The Raiders still plan on playing in Oakland the next two seasons, as their new 65,000-seat stadium continues to be built. Davis addressed the news according to Raiders:
“My father always said, ‘the greatness of the Raiders is in its future,’ and the opportunity to build a world-class stadium in the entertainment capital of the world is a significant step toward achieving that greatness. I would like to thank Commissioner Goodell, the National Football League and my 31 partners. I would also like to thank Governor Brian Sandoval and the Nevada Legislature for their commitment. Finally, I would like to thank Sheldon Adelson for his vision and leadership, without which this project never would have become a reality.
“The Raiders were born in Oakland and Oakland will always be part of our DNA. We know that some fans will be disappointed and even angry, but we hope that they do not direct that frustration to the players, coaches and staff. We plan to play at the Coliseum in 2017 and 2018, and hope to stay there as the Oakland Raiders until the new stadium opens. We would love nothing more than to bring a championship back to the Bay Area.”
While the relationship between Oakland and the Raiders has not ended, it has been given an expiration date. However, by the way the team has been producing on the field, the Raiders still have great things for the Bay area before they leave.
After a 14-year playoff drought, the Raiders returned following a 12-4 regular season record. Unfortunately, Derek Carr suffered a broken fibula against the Indianapolis Colts and they eventually fell to the Houston Texans in the wild card round.