St. Louis's renovation proposal looks like this. The Ram plan... doesn't. - Dilip Vishwanat
The St. Louis Rams are going to London on Sunday, in a much-maligned global publicity stunt, but the city Rams fans worry about most is still Los Angeles.
For most football fans, news that their team would be playing a home game in London would come as little more than a minor annoyance. For St. Louis Rams fans, watching them play a home game in another city is—well, it's a bit of a touchy subject. The 2012 season was preceded by months of unproductive Rams stadium negotiations, with the Rams hoping for a gorgeous, retractable-roof boondoggle and the St. Louis convention authority offering... well, a bigger jumbotron and carpool-lane access. The leverage? Los Angeles, in pursuit of a team to call its own after losing the Rams and Raiders in the 90s.
The matter remains unresolved at midseason, with Jeff Fisher and company leading a promising rebuilding project and St. Louis fans hoping they'll be able to see the finished product in person. I think they're more likely than not to stay in town, but until the public-funding bubble for stadiums bursts it's hard to see a situation where St. Louis springs for anything near the Rams' initial proposal.
Going to London to play the New England Patriots is a sign more of their ineptitude than their nefarious intentions, but right now Rams fans are in a position where trust is a little hard. They might say they're just going out to the corner store for a pack of cigarettes, but we'll be watching the Edward Jones Dome out of the corner of our eyes until we see their car pull up in the driveway.