Could the Kansas City Chiefs be crossing the state line in years to come? Chiefs President Mark Donovan has opened the door to the idea, according to Kevin Clark of The Ringer.
Chiefs prez Mark Donovan, when asked this AM about potential new stadium options, said the team has considered options in state of Kansas. They like Arrowhead and legacy of Lamar Hunt’s stadium, but have been pitched by Kansas developers on a bunch of options. Something to watch.
— Kevin Clark (@bykevinclark), 10:21 AM, Mar 29, 2022
Ben Fischer of Sports Business Journal directly quoted Donovan from the NFL's annual meetings.
"Pretty consistently, we get inquiries from the state of Kansas, [that] if you’re going to make a change, what if you brought the stadium here?" Donovan said, according to SBJ. "So we’re looking at that as well."
Fischer writes that Donovan said the Chiefs are "also considering further renovations and the possibility of building a replacement for Arrowhead on site."
As the Kansas City Royals continue to signal that they're planning to leave the Truman Sports Complex in favor of a future home in downtown Kansas City, Missouri, the Chiefs are now floating the idea of their own uncertain future, potentially moving away from GEHA Field at Arrowhead Stadium in Kansas City, Missouri.
On November 18, 2021, Chiefs Chairman and CEO Clark Hunt was asked about the Royals' plans and how their departure would impact the Chiefs' future.
"Obviously, we’ve been connected to the Royals for almost 50 years now here at the sports complex, so their decision on their long-term future will have an impact on us," Hunt said. "We’re going to watch as they go through the process and at some point in the next year or so start thinking about what’s next for the Chiefs from a stadium standpoint."
Also on Nov. 18, Hunt said he believes that Arrowhead "is still one of the finest stadiums in the National Football League, and the renovation that we completed about 11 or 12 years ago really brought the stadium back into the top-tier in the National Football League." Hunt was also asked if the Royals' potential departure would open up the possibility of having more entertainment options around Arrowhead, at its current location.
"One of the great things about the sports complex is how big it is and that’s created the opportunity for our fans to have the tremendous tailgate experience that they have before the game each week so we’re fortunate to have that kind of built-in experience already," Hunt said. "Obviously, if the Royals weren’t playing at the sports complex, it would open up more space and maybe allow us to do some more programming that we haven’t done in the past."
Shortly after Donovan's comments began circulating on Tuesday morning, Kansas City, Missouri Mayor Quinton Lucas tweeted about the city's support of the Chiefs and commitment to remaining their home into the future.
Kansas City has proudly hosted the Chiefs since the early 1960s. We look forward to working with the Chiefs, our state of Missouri partners, and local officials to ensure the Chiefs remain home in Kansas City and Missouri for generations to come.
— Mayor Q (@QuintonLucasKC) 10:38 AM, Mar 29, 2022
Ultimately, this could all be a matter of early jostling between the Chiefs and KCMO, as the team will almost certainly be looking for taxpayer dollars to help renovate Arrowhead or build something new on the Missouri side.
When Arrowhead last saw major renovations, the Chiefs signed a 25-year extension to remain at Arrowhead, as taxpayers funded $250 million for the renovation, according to kcur.org:
The Chiefs agreed to a 25-year extension of its sublease of Arrowhead in return for the stadium’s renovation. Taxpayers kicked in the majority of the funding, $250 million, through Jackson County sales taxes.