We would be out literally in practice, during practice, talking about playing in LA. Honestly. How nice would it be to be practicing in LA? Just go to the mall after practice in LA. It’s such a beautiful day in LA all the time.
Some bold statements and, no doubt, a bit of controversy during Friday’s NFLPA Collegiate Bowl Media Day.
Los Angeles is so attractive. All the people that are out here, all the celebrities. The celebrity that you get from playing for the LA team. All the hookups that you’re going to get — you’re going to go to restaurants and clubs, get clothes. I played in New York, so I saw the big town, the media. There are so many eyes on you it’s a great opportunity
The bold one was St. Louis Rams wide receiver Steve Smith. He said this coming season would be the last for the Rams in St. Louis and that he and his Rams teammates prefer to play in Los Angeles and would be kicking off in the City of Angels in 2014.
Smith, a native of Los Angeles who played his college ball at USC and attended Taft high school in Woodland Hills, Calif. (not coincidentally the same high school and college of current Rams head coach Jeff Fisher.), was one of five expert panelists discussing the return of the NFL to Los Angeles.
“We’re thankful for the city of St. Louis.” Smith said. He continued, “But it’d be a treat to be located back home in Los Angeles.”
Of course, the Rams called Los Angeles home from 1946 until their move to St. Louis to kickoff the 1995 season. They’re now locked in arbitration with the city of St. Louis on the cost to make the Edward Jones Dome a “first tier” NFL stadium and could break their lease after the 2014 season.
I was able to catch up and interview Smith on camera after the panel discussion and asked him to elaborate on his bold predictions regarding the Rams and Los Angeles:
Last year was Smith’s first with the Rams. He played in just nine games catching 14 passes for 131 yards and no touchdowns.
Two of these four panelist agreed the Rams would return while one said the San Diego Chargers and Rams would both eventually move to L.A. Another said, “I don’t know.”