It’s now been five days and the fires in the North Bay continue to threaten large areas and the smoke and ash from those fires continue to pour over various parts of the Bay Area. The team shortened practice Thursday for a second straight day and concerns have arisen about holding the Raiders’ game against the Chargers in Oakland Sunday.
As you can see by this map, the air quality remains ‘Unhealthy’ as of 2pm today. It has remained there the past few days.
It’s serious enough that the league has checked into the status of Levi’s Stadium in Santa Clara as an alternative site for the game according to Tim Kawakami of the Athletic.
NFL source: The league has checked to see if Levi's Stadium is available for Raiders-Chargers this weekend. It is. Just one option.— Tim Kawakami (@timkawakami) October 12, 2017
As Kawakami notes, Levi’s is ‘Just one option.’ And as the map shows, it’s possible the air in Santa Clara won’t be any better.
Another option was presented today by the Mayor of San Diego who has offered up Qualcomm Stadium as a destination for the game. The stadium has long had a lot more Raiders fans inhabiting it when the Silver & Black come to town, so it has always had the feeling of a Raiders home game regardless.
Levi’s would be the most logical and sensible alternative should the league decide playing in Oakland is simply not a viable place to hold a game.
A decision one way or the other is expected to come down either today or tomorrow.
Update: As of 4:40pm PST the Raiders have said they continue to monitor air quality conditions in the Bay Area and are in close communication with the NFL, the Chargers and local authorities. At that time, the game remains scheduled for Sunday in Oakland.