The Rams will convert their lease on the Edward Jones Dome to year-to-year status in a possible first step toward relocating to Los Angeles.
The St. Louis Convention and Visitors Committee confirmed Monday that the Rams informed the group of its intentions to shift to a year-to-year lease agreement for the Edward Jones Dome, according to the Associated Press.
The CVC operates the dome. The Rams had a Wednesday deadline in order to notify the CVC of such a shift, a change it is permitted to make should the stadium be deemed not among the top 25 percent best in the NFL based on certain criteria.
The CVC released the following statement to ESPN.com:
“We have received notification from the St. Louis Rams of their intent to convert their lease agreement to an annual tenancy effective in March 2015. While the lease will now run year-to-year, all other lease terms remain the same. We look forward to working with Rams’ management in preparation for the 2015 football season in the Edward Jones Dome.”
It was reported earlier this month that Rams owner Stan Kroenke plans to build an NFL stadium on land he owns in a Los Angeles suburb. The shift to a year-to-year lease could be a step in the Rams' eventual relocation to Los Angeles, allowing for an easier withdrawal from the agreement.
From NFL.com's Ian Rapoport:
The early January announcement that Rams owner Stan Kroenke is planning an extravagant Inglewood stadium sent shockwaves through NFL circles, but -- according to those with direct knowledge of the proceedings -- was met with quiet applause at the league office, which has been waiting for a powerful plan like this one to get behind. And despite St. Louis and Missouri officials responding quickly with their own stadium vision, the momentum here has very clearly shifted west.
St. Louis officials are working to keep the Rams from moving. City officials this month announced plans for a new open-air stadium that would open by 2020.
The NFL confirmed earlier this month that no teams have applied for relocation for the 2015 season and that there will be no relocation this year.
- Ben Estes