The XFL Has Done Reasonable Well In St. Louis
As the National Football League’s celebration of salary suppression better known as the NFL Draft continues in Kansas City, Missouri, some 250 miles east of the draft party in St. Louis, Missouri there are some people who think the National Football League should return to the city as soon as possible. What is the proof that St. Louis is a good football town? The pro-NFL people point out the attendance figures for the XFL’s Battlehawks with crowds greater than 30,000 people per opening. That is a great figure for the XFL which has not sold many tickets in 2023 but you cannot compare the XFL to the NFL. Tickets are cheaper for XFL contests. St. Louis has been an NFL failure for 100 years. A 1923 team called the St. Louis All-Stars lasted a year. During the Depression an independent team called the St. Louis Gunners replaced the Cincinnati Reds, which had its league membership suspended in 1934 with three games left in the season. Those three games were the only NFL games for the Gunners franchise. St. Louis ended up with the Chicago Cardinals franchise in 1960 and that team played there until 1987 when Bill Bidwill took his business to Arizona.
In 1995, St. Louis officials lured Georgia Frontiere’s Anaheim-based Los Angeles Rams to town. That team lasted 21 years in Missouri and left when Stan Kroenke moved his business to the Los Angeles-area. Kroenke and the NFL’s ending in St. Louis was not good and the city sued Kroenke for bad faith bargaining in either extending the team’s lease or building Kroenke a new stadium. Kroenke wanted to go to Los Angeles. In 2021, the National Football League and Los Angeles Rams owner Stan Kroenke reached a settlement with officials in St. Louis for $790 million. St. Louis is not getting an NFL franchise anytime soon.
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