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Raiders with most to lose with potential single team in Los Angeles

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There are still many scenarios in play for teams looking to move into the Los Angeles market. One that hasn't been discussed much previous to a report that was put out today is that the league could potentially opt for just one team in Los Angeles.

It isn't a new scenario, but the report from Pro Football Talk suggests the idea could be gaining some traction, insisting that the move being discussed is not the previously reported idea of moving one team for now and waiting a year to add another, but that it would be one team only indefinitely.

The shift comes from the league's intense desire to get it right in L.A. Although it would be a lot easier to build a stadium with private money if 20 games per year are played there, instantly assigning two teams to a market that for 20 years has had none may not be the best way to reconnect with Los Angeles.

Hard to argue with that logic. Unfortunately, if the NFL chooses that outcome over others which all involve two of the three teams - Chargers, Raiders, and Rams - sharing Los Angeles either in Inglewood or Carson, it would be the Raiders who would be the ones in the worst position.

The most likely single team to make it to Los Angeles would appear to be the Rams because owner Stan Kroenke is dead set on building his team a stadium. The only thing that could potentially get in the way of that is if the league and its new 6-man owner panel block it, which they could do based on the hoops St Louis is willing to jump through that Kroenke is brazenly rebuffing.

The next most likely team would be the Chargers based on the fact that they were prepared to move to Carson on their own with Goldman Saks as investors before the Raiders jumped in on the project. But even if it weren't the Chargers, San Diego has put together viable proposals to keep the Chargers which, should Los Angeles no longer be an option, the Chargers and owner Dean Spanos have the groundwork to get something done to stay.

The Raiders are a very distant third in any realistic possibility of making the jump to Los Angeles on their own. They would need to either keep their plans in Carson with the Chargers or jump in on the Kroenke project in Inglewood. And the Raiders have no viable stadium plan in place in Oakland to fall back on like the Rams and Chargers do should LA be taken off the table.

A potential move to Los Angeles is not just a threat to Oakland. It is a real thing. But it is also a leverage play. Oakland has been standing pat on their unwillingness to provide public funds as it stands already. If the Raiders' only leverage is removed (LA), the City of Oakland has no incentive to do anything at all. They can just keep playing politics and kick the can down the road as they've done for years.

The next owner's meeting convenes in New York in three weeks. This possibility will be discussed along with the other potential combinations of teams and scenarios at that time. And they could also bring some clarity as to which team(s) they prefer to make the jump to LA in 2016.