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Art Rooney II on NFL in LA: Build stadium, team will come

By Ryan Wilson | CBSSports.com

Art Rooney II doesn't see the NFL moving to an 18-game schedule. (USATSI)
Art Rooney II doesn't see the NFL moving to an 18-game schedule. (USATSI)

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The NFL-in-LA math is pretty simple, really: If there's a stadium, an NFL team will follow. At least that's how Steelers co-owner and president Art Rooney II sees it.

In a wide-ranging interview with Sports Business Daily, Rooney touched on a number of topics, including the NFL bringing football back to Los Angeles.

“It's all about a stadium," Rooney said. "If they build it, [a team] will come. Maybe more than one. I believe we will have one, maybe two teams there in the next 10 years. The league just wants to make sure it works this time. LA is a great market. It's just making sure there's a great venue there.”

Rooney sounded less excited about the possibility of a team calling London home, though it appears to remain a long-term possibility.

“We're still a little ways away from deciding whether we can locate a team there, but so far so good," he said. "I'm not necessarily sold on the idea that we need to have a team there to be successful ... Unless someone brings back the Concorde.”

(Note: CBS Sports NFL Insider Jason La Canfora has written previously about the NFL returning to Los Angeles, and the possibility of an NFL team in London.)

Rooney also touched on cold-weather Super Bowls ("I hope we see one in my lifetime in Pittsburgh"), the NFL-NFLPA relationship (“'Strained' might be one way to say it"), as well as playoff expansion and the 18-game regular-season schedule.

On the former: We're interested in looking at [playoff expansion]," he said. "From the Pittsburgh perspective, we have an open mind about it. One more playoff game in the opening round would allow more fans to be alive in the competing cities.”

Mercifully, the 18-game schedule sounds like it won't happen anytime soon.

“Not in the near future," Rooney said. "The truth is, we haven't had any meaningful discussion about expanding the regular season since the early days of negotiating the recent CBA.”

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