If you want to read the tea leaves on how a possible relocation to Vegas will go down, there is one owner who might be smart to listen to, and that's Cowboys owner Jerry Jones. He's one of the most powerful owners in the league, and if you believe the stories of back-room dealings, he helped shepherd the Rams to Los Angeles.
And Jones, while speaking on CBS Sports Radio affiliate 105.3 the Fan in Dallas Tuesday morning, says he sees the Raiders to Vegas as almost a sure thing. He called it "pretty definitive" and said it could be "as strong" as the Los Angeles situation.
"Really if you look at the history of teams moving, this is pretty definitive. There's a pretty bright line right there. They've provided for a team, the most funding that's ever been funded from third parties," Jones said. "So that's about as strong, L.A. never really had that powerful of influence, I'll put it that way. Which is over $700 million of initial contribution from the state of Nevada and the city of Las Vegas. That's pretty strong. Vegas has a lot going for it. I think it's going to really have, a real, if you will, strong case to get an NFL football team. I know that Oakland, certainly, was approved to move earlier this year.
"And you put all of that together and that's pretty confluence of things coming together. I call that the crosshair theory when things get in the crosshair, you better recognize it most of the time."
Now, Jones isn't the end-all, be-all of decisions when it comes to moving a franchise. The NFL owners still have to vote on the Raiders going to Vegas, with the Raiders needing 24 votes to make the move.
Roger Goodell would prefer to keep an NFL team in the Bay Area TV market, however, and it's entirely possible the Raiders don't get to hold a relocation vote in January. That would make things interesting if the Chargers pass on their opportunity to move to Los Angeles, as the Raiders would get an option to join the Rams at that point.
"I would expect the league to delay any vote for as long as possible," one ownership source told CBS Sports NFL Insider Jason La Canfora. "Mark is adamant that they are gone, but the league isn't in any rush to bring this to a head."
Nevada has already given the NFL plenty to consider, but there's still plenty of work to be done. Having the blessing of Jones is not a negative, though.