The Oakland Alameda County Coliseum Authority voted on Friday to approve a new stadium lease with the Raiders.
It was reported last month that the team and stadium reached an agreement on a new lease, but it was still pending official approval. With the Coliseum Authority signing off on the new deal, it is all but assured the Raiders will play there next season. The Oakland City Council and Alameda County Board of Supervisors still also have to vote on the deal, but members of those groups comprise the Coliseum Authority, so those votes are expected to just be a formality at this point.
In the new lease, the Raiders will pay $7.5 million to play at the Coliseum in 2019, and they will have a $10.5 million option to remain there for 2020. The team is planning on moving to Las Vegas for the 2020 season, but the option to remain in the Coliseum is a form of insurance in case their new stadium is not constructed in time. As of now, the Las Vegas stadium is still on track to open for the 2020 season.
The Raiders' new deal with the Coliseum was expected to be agreed upon much earlier, but after the city sued the team and the NFLfor the move to Vegas, owner Mark Davis backed out of the negotiations to explore other options before returning to the table.
The team explored playing at the 49ers' Levi's Stadium in Santa Clara, Calif. and the newly-named Oracle Park, which is home to MLB's San Francisco Giants. Additionally, Tucson, Ariz. and Birmingham, Ala. made a pitch to split the responsibilities of hosting the Raiders, offering to have the team play half their home games in each city. And there was also talk of the team playing its home games in London for the season.
Coming off a 4-12 season, the Raiders will play seven games in Oakland in 2019. The Broncos, Chargers, Chiefs, Bengals, Jaguars, Titans and Lions will visit the Oakland Coliseum in 2019 and the Raiders eighth "home" game will be played against the Bears in London.