Yes, I think you may have read that headline correctly. The Oakland A's are to the Raiders what British boy band One Direction is to the rest of the NFL. And since you still have that look on your face, let me explain.
The NFL schedule came out yesterday and while I was touting just how favorable the Raiders schedule was, a few other 'woe is me, the NFL hates us' types out there disagreed. Many fans don't like the fact that the Raiders only play in Oakland once in September -- their home opener on September 14 against the Texans. But the NFL had nothing to do with that. It's the Oakland A's who are to blame.
The A's have home games on the Sunday of the Raiders season opener so the league sent the Raiders to New York to face the Jets. They again have a home game on the third Sunday of the month so the Raiders will be in New England. That trip sets up perfectly for the Raiders to head straight from New England to (jolly) old England the following week. Then because of the trip to London, the Raiders have a bye afterward.
This means the Raiders won't play a second game in Oakland until October 12. By that point, barring a deep playoff run, the A's season will be over and grass will be restored to O.co coliseum.
So, at this point you are probably wondering what any of this has to do with a British boy band.
Well, O.co may be the only stadium in America still home to a MLB and NFL team, but that doesn't mean in other cities, the NFL is the only game in town.
Stadiums host concerts and other events as well. The biggest thorn in the NFL schedule makers sides in other stadiums this year is the One Direction fall tour. And since armies of screaming girls go nuts (and I'm sure some boys too... and their parents) for this tweenie bopper (trademark) sensation, they require the seating capacity of an NFL stadium to accommodate them.
There are four different NFL teams who needed to schedule an away game the week the One Direction tour comes through. It will hit New Orleans on Sept. 25, Atlanta on Oct. 1, Tampa on Oct. 3, and Miami on Oct. 5.
And that's just one date per team. The A's will cause two away games with the third having the Raiders and One Direction swapping host countries. And if the A's make the playoffs it could further complicate things.
Last season with the A's in the playoffs, the Raiders home game against the Chargers on October 6 was switched to an late night game and nearly postponed because there was an A's game the day before and there was concern the stadium wouldn't be able to make the transition in such a short time. As it stood, the game started at 8:35pm and didn't get over until after midnight.
So, in that regard the A's are worse than a moppy-haired, pre-pubescent boy band. And just another reminder that the current stadium situation can't continue this way.