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Steelerlyn
11-18-2006, 01:24 PM
Two Teams, One Major Request
Giants, Jets Seek Loan From NFL For New Stadium

By Mark Maske
Washington Post Staff Writer
Saturday, November 18, 2006; Page E04

EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. -- It stands off Exit 16W of the New Jersey Turnpike, in the shadow of New York City, as a shrine to some great and memorable football.
It conjures visions of wind-swept fall and winter days when Bill Parcells
coached the New York Giants with Phil Simms and Lawrence Taylor, in games with NFC East titles and Super Bowl berths at stake. It spawned non-football
legends as well, like the one about Jimmy Hoffa being buried beneath an end
zone.

But 30-year-old Giants Stadium also is a monument to something else: financial mediocrity for its two NFL occupants. The Giants and New York Jets, despite playing in the media capital of the world, rank in the middle of the league's pack in revenues, having been far surpassed by franchises -- such as the Washington Redskins -- with more aggressive approaches and newer stadiums that tap into lucrative revenue streams.

An artist's rendering shows the proposed new stadium that would replace Giants Stadium and be owned and operated jointly by the Giants and Jets. Some NFL owners have reservations about approving a $300 million loan for the project.An artist's rendering shows the proposed new stadium that would replace Giants Stadium and be owned and operated jointly by the Giants and Jets. Some NFL owners have reservations about approving a $300 million loan for the project.

Now the Giants and Jets are trying to do something about that, with plans to
open a privately financed, approximately $1.2 billion stadium at the
Meadowlands in 2010 that would make the teams among the most profitable in the
sport.

There's a problem, however: The project hinges on approval by the league's
owners of a $300 million loan from the NFL's stadium subsidy fund. And other
owners are making the Giants and Jets sweat out that approval in the aftermath
of the bitter fight between high- and low-revenue teams last winter and spring
that preceded the owners' approval of a labor and revenue-sharing settlement.

"I don't know what's going to happen," the owner of one small-market NFL
franchise said last week. "People are saying they won't vote for it. But
sometimes clubs say one thing and then vote the other way."

The owner spoke on the condition of anonymity, not wanting to be viewed as
publicly restarting the tussle between high- and low-revenue teams. Other
owners and club executives contacted in recent weeks spoke about the issue on
the same condition. It's a highly sensitive topic these days, with
Commissioner Roger Goodell likely to call for a vote by the owners next month
on the $300 million request by the Giants and Jets. The request needs to be
approved by at least 24 of the 32 teams. Supporters of the project think the
request will be approved but wouldn't want to wager money on it, and they
don't want to say anything publicly that might jeopardize ratification.

The prevailing view leaguewide also seems to be that the request likely will
be approved but with griping by low-revenue clubs still upset over the terms
of the labor and revenue-sharing deals. Even opponents of the $300 million
request concede that's the probable outcome. Still, there's enough lingering
resentment in the high-revenue/low-revenue divide that rejection is not
completely out of the question.

"People are asking, 'Why should I fund this project that will be an ATM
machine for those two teams?' " an executive from one low-revenue club said.
"If you form a block and force approval of a labor deal that gives everything
to the players, don't turn around and expect us to support a project like
this. . . . If you take people at what they're saying, the thing doesn't
happen. But I'm done trying to predict what happens when the owners get into a room to vote."

Requests by teams for grants from the league's G-3 stadium loan program
usually are relatively routine. Goodell's predecessor, Paul Tagliabue, made
stadium construction a top priority and wanted the league to be a business
partner with teams and their communities in the projects. The G-3 program, run cooperatively by the league and the NFL Players Association, was put in place in 1999, and 10 teams have received loans to build or renovate stadiums.

But previous subsidies were limited to $150 million per project. The Giants
and Jets are asking for $300 million because they decided to combine on a
stadium project after the Jets were unable to secure public funding for a
proposed stadium on the West Side of Manhattan. Supporters of this project say the request is reasonable because two teams are involved, even if it's only one stadium.

"I think it's very reasonable to look at it that way," Dallas Cowboys owner
Jerry Jones said at an owners' meeting last month in New Orleans.

But other owners are wary of the size of the G-3 request, saying that approval of the loan for the New York stadium project and of another pending request by the Kansas City Chiefs basically would empty the G-3 fund. There are deeper issues with the request by the Giants and Jets, though.

The owners voted 30 to 2 in March to approve the labor and revenue-sharing
settlement, with only the Buffalo Bills' Ralph Wilson and the Cincinnati
Bengals' Mike Brown opposing the deal. The labor deal expanded the pool of
revenues from which NFL players are paid under the salary cap system, giving
the players 59 percent of total football revenues. The revenue-sharing accord provides for increased payments from high-revenue teams to low-revenue clubs.
But some owners of lower-revenue franchises continue to maintain that even the bolstered revenue-sharing plan is not sufficient to offset what they view as excessive player costs under the new labor deal.

A league built on an all-for-one, one-for-all financial model -- the teams
share national television revenues equally -- continues to struggle with
concerns about the growing revenue disparities between franchises, when owners such as Jones and the Redskins' Daniel Snyder have found ways to tap into unshared revenue sources such as luxury suites and local sponsorships.

An artist's rendering shows the proposed new stadium that would replace Giants Stadium and be owned and operated jointly by the Giants and Jets. Some NFL owners have reservations about approving a $300 million loan for the project.
An artist's rendering shows the proposed new stadium that would replace Giants Stadium and be owned and operated jointly by the Giants and Jets. Some NFL owners have reservations about approving a $300 million loan for the project.

The Giants and Jets, for now, are not among the most affluent franchises. In
the latest annual ranking by Forbes magazine of NFL franchise values, the
Giants were ranked 15th with an estimated worth of $890 million and the Jets
were 19th at $876 million. The magazine estimated the values of five
franchises at more than $1 billion, led by the Redskins at $1.4 billion. The
estimated annual revenues of the two New York clubs -- $182 million for the
Giants and $179 million for the Jets -- lag far behind the Redskins'
league-leading total of $303 million.

But that would change with a new stadium in the New York area. Estimates say that the new facility would produce about $100 million in additional revenues and $22 million in profits annually for each team. The additional revenues largely would be from sources, such as luxury suites, that the Giants and Jets would not have to share with other NFL teams. But those revenues would count toward the total football revenues pool on which the salary cap is based, so the player costs for the other clubs would increase by an estimated $2 million per team annually. Some other teams thus view themselves as being asked to fund a project that will have a direct financial benefit only for the Giants, the Jets and the players. Under the G-3 program, the bulk of a loan for a stadium is repaid from the visiting teams' share of club seat receipts.

"It's a tremendous increase in unshared revenue," an executive from a
higher-revenue team said. "It's always that way with a new stadium. What's
different about this is that because it's the New York market, the numbers are so extraordinarily large. And we'd be tapping out the G-3 fund."

It's conceivable that the Giants and Jets still could go ahead with the
stadium project even without the $300 million subsidy from the league. But
that would involve increased financial risks for the teams, and
representatives of both clubs informed the other owners at the New Orleans
meeting that they're not prepared to do that.

There are compelling arguments in favor of ratification of the $300 million
request. Supporters say it behooves the league to have a showcase stadium in New York. Teams don't like to reject G-3 requests because they might, one day, have one of their own pending. And the late Giants owner Wellington Mara, father of current club president and chief executive John Mara, was one of the most revered figures in league history, once agreeing to surrender the heftier share of the league's TV rights that a New York franchise could command in favor of having a balanced, competitive league.

"Ultimately," the executive from the higher-revenue team said, "I think it'll
go through."

SteelerFan87
11-18-2006, 06:51 PM
I think $300 million is kind of ridiculous. Lower the ammount of the loan, and have the Jets and Giants pay more. It's a new stadium in New York, that they will own. It will make them a ton of money. If they have to spend more themselves to build it, so be it. The cost will be far outweighed by the revenue.

Steelerlyn
11-18-2006, 10:17 PM
Look at Heinz, that is a tax supported venue. And also the reason the Steeler logo is not put on until after the high school playoffs and after Pitt is finished playing on it, it is also the reason, it is always tore up, way too much traffic. If I were Rooney and had my druthers, I would have just bought the venue and Pitt and all high schools can go play elsewhere. Anytime you get tax money involved you have to give in to their demands. Or do all NFL stadiums have to get the money from the surrounding towns and the NFL?

Steelersfan
11-18-2006, 10:20 PM
The NFL has revenue sharing so the more money the Giants and Jets make the more the other teams can make. It's in the leagues best interest to get NY teams a better stadium to make more money.

BlacknGold Bleeder
11-19-2006, 11:40 AM
A 1.2 billion dollar stadium??? That is extreme, most of the other stadiums are being built for less than half that !! if they can fund the other 800,000 or 900,000 dollars why do they need 300,000 from the NFL? take out some of the bells and whistles and be reasonable. Are they going to make a bigger contribution to the revenue sharing ? There seems to be alot of unanswered questions...
As far as Heinz field being used for the high school championships, I believe that that is by choice of the Rooneys, nobody is making those games be played there. It gives the kids something to shoot for !!

Captcoolhand
11-19-2006, 11:47 AM
As much as New York bring in they should go after the City for the money:scratch:

Hburg
11-20-2006, 02:18 AM
Here's an idea, with not one but TWO teams that represent New York......how about having them actually play in NEW YORK!! Stop making Jersey your b*tch. If they want to keep playing in New Jersey at least one of those teams should become either the Newark or New Jersey Giants/Jets. I'm sure Donald Trump would agree. In fact maybe he would put in some funding........

It all sounds ridiculous that they want so much money.

BuFu