Word has leaked that the Raiders will play the Houston Texans in Mexico City next season, the first International Series game outside London since the 2005 season.
But, hey, why stop there? Team owner Mark Davis likes to brag that Raiders Nation extends around the world, right? So why have one home when his team can have eight of them?
That’s right, the Raiders could split their regular-season schedule among eight cities — Oakland, Las Vegas, London, Mexico City, San Antonio, St. Louis, Toronto and either Los Angeles or San Diego, whichever has a vacancy. That might get them eight sellouts. The last time a game was played in Mexico City, a mob of 103,000-plus fans paid to see it.
America’s Team? Ha. Try the World’s Team, pal.
Uh, anyone got a better idea right now?
VOTE FOR EDDIE: Former 49ers owner Edward DeBartolo Jr. is a finalist for the Pro Football Hall of Fame, which unlike Major League Baseball doesn’t take character into account. So throw out that felony conviction of his.
That said, Eddie D. deserves to be in Canton, not only because of all those Super Bowl trophies but because of his overlooked role in the generous success that the NFL is these days.Wait — let former Niners quarterback Steve Young explain . . .
“[Eddie] and his players were family to this day. Still, if you need something from Eddie … Anybody who played for the team could call him personally and he would find a way to help him. That fundamental change of how owners looked at players and how they related to each other changed the dynamic for how the CBA was negotiated 15 years later, how the players now are true partners with the owners. It might not be perfect, but there’s a partnership that has exploded the success of the league.”
THINK YOUNG: Quarterback Colin Kaepernick and the Niners have 55 days to tie te knot or file for divorce. What Would Steve Do?
“I would go to (coach) Chip Kelly and tell him, ‘Whatever happened last year, whatever you saw, whatever you thought was a weakness in my game, whatever the holes, the cracks in the wall, I’m going to fix,” Young said in a huddle with the media at Moscone West on Thursday. “I made some mistakes. I lost the team a little bit. I lost the locker room a little bit. I didn’t respond the way I should have to adversity. But I’ve learned. I’ve figured it out. And I’ve got the talent; I’ve got the ability to make your offense hum.’ Because Chip would respond to that, right? Because that’s what Chip’s worried about. He’s not worried about Colin having ability He’s worried about Colin having all the software to go do it … I would go sell it.
“If I’m the quarterback and I’m on the team when Chip Kelly shows up, I’m not going [anywhere]. Take me. Teach me. Show me how to score some points.”
JUST ASKIN’: Chris Martin and his Coldplay supporting cast charmed the media in their pre-Super Bowl news conference, where a CBS Newspath person requested a hug. Because, you know, what would Super Bowl Week be without dumbness? .
“As long as LeBron James has a good game … We’re definitely rooting for the Denver Panthers,” Martin kidded, Balls thinks.
Is there still time to have Coldplay perform stand-up at halftime and someone really good like, say, Taylor Swift do the show?
MANNING GOES ON OFFENSIVE: According to the Washington Post, Denver Broncos quarterback Peyton Manning was so hacked off about claims of human growth hormone use that his lawyers launched a private investigation of Charles Sly, the source of the Al Jazeera America’s report.
Archie Manning went to bat for his kid on Thursday, when called the report “pretty shabby journalism.”
“(Peyton) told me, ‘I didn’t do that,’ Archie told ESPN’s Mike & Mike. “I always had a saying when he was going through everything and he had to talk to a lot of different doctors and trainers, and I always said, ‘No voodoo.’ That was kind of our theme. And he didn’t. He said he didn’t. He didn’t.”
Archie hadn’t spoken with Peyton about his post-Super Bowl plans. He said the “drama” of a move to a new team such as the Rams might be too much for the quarterback to handle.
“He’ll find the right time to sit down and discuss it,” Archie said. “He hasn’t talked to me. He’ll talk to (his wife) Ashley. I think it will be pretty clear-cut. He loves this game. . . . The end of last year being hurt, this year being hurt could affect this. When the time comes, he’ll sit down and make the right decision.”
DOUBLE DUTY: Local Super Bowl MVPs Marcus Allen, Joe Montana, Jim Plunkett, Jerry Rice and Steve Young will participate in pre-game ceremonies on Sunday.
Montana has been designated to flip the coin, and if Manning has another Super Bowl stinker, Joe Cool will be available off the bench.
JUST SAYIN: Cleveland Browns legend Jim Brown celebrated his 80th birthday on Thursday, and the Greatest of All Time could still kick our asses if we gave him a reason.
BIG BROTHER’S WATCHING: The Warriors visited the White House on Thursday, and President Obama did the impossible. He shut up Draymond Green for a while.
“Draymond Green showing us heart over height every single night,” said Prez, a Chicago Bulls fans since the Michael Jordan days. “Draymond is also known to add a few more words that I cannot repeat.”
“He told me I needed to watch my mouth,” Green smiled. “So be on the lookout for that. He watches the game.”
Got an opinion? A gripe? A compliment? (A compliment?!?) Send them to firstname.lastname@example.org and you may get your name in the paper one day.Al-Jazeera Americacanton ohioCarolina Pantherscharles slyChip KellyChris MartinColdplayColin KaepernickEdward DeBartolo Jr.halftime showHouston TexansLas VegasLeBron JamesLondonLos AngelesMajor League BaseballMark DavisMexico Citymoscone westOaklandOakland RaidersPaul Ladewskipeyton ManningPro Football Hall of FameSan AntonioSan DiegoSan Francisco 49ersSt. LouisSteve YoungSuper Bowl 50Toronto