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April 18, 2019

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Raiders still homeless for 2019 season


Jeff Chiu / AP

The outside of Oakland Alameda County Coliseum is shown before an NFL football game between the Oakland Raiders and the Denver Broncos in Oakland, Calif., Sunday, Nov. 6, 2016.

As the Oakland Raiders begin training camp ahead of this year’s season, where the team will play in 2019 remains up in the air.

After months of negotiations, the Raiders and the Oakland-Alameda County Coliseum Authority still don’t have a lease agreement in place to house the NFL team beyond the upcoming season. The team is scheduled to start playing at a new stadium in Las Vegas in 2020, leaving a one-year gap.

But Coliseum Authority Executive Director Scott McKibben remains optimistic the sides will come to an agreement for next year.

“We have had productive and meaningful discussions with the Raiders, and it’s fair to say that we’re getting very close to an extension that would cover two years,” McKibben said. “It would cover 2019 and it will also give them an option for 2020 if the construction timeline is such that they can’t get into Vegas for that season.”

If the Raiders don’t strike a deal to play at the Coliseum in 2019, they would have to scramble to find another facility.

The only possibility in Las Vegas would be Sam Boyd Stadium, home of the UNLV football team. But the 46-year-old, 40,000-seat stadium would require a number of upgrades to host an NFL game.

“We have not heard from the Raiders regarding the 2019 season, but UNLV has always been willing to work with our new partners if that ever became a possibility,” UNLV Athletic Director Desiree Reed-Francois said.

The Raiders declined to comment on the lease situation.