Raiders game may move

NFL watch­ing fires; El­liott’s 6-game ban up­held on ap­peal.

The Palm Beach Post - - SPORTS -

The NFL is keep­ing an eye on the wild­fires in North­ern Cal­i­for­nia and has been ex­plor­ing op­tions to move Sun­day’s game be­tween the Oak­land Raiders and Los An­ge­les Charg­ers if it be­comes nec­es­sary.

Michael Sig­nora, the NFL’s vice pres­i­dent of foot­ball com­mu­ni­ca­tions, said Thurs­day that the league is get­ting up­dates on the sit­u­a­tion from both teams and from city of­fi­cials in Oak­land.

“We con­tinue to mon­i­tor air qual­ity con­di­tions in the Bay Area and are in close com­mu­ni­ca­tion with both the Raiders and Charg­ers, as well as lo­cal au­thor­i­ties,” Sig­nora said. “At this point, the game re­mains sched­uled for Sun­day in Oak­land.”

At least 26 peo­ple have died and some 3,500 homes and busi­nesses have been de­stroyed by the blazes, which be­gan in Cal­i­for­nia wine coun­try Sun­day. An es­ti­mated 25,000 peo­ple have been driven from their homes.

Oak­land, which is about 45 miles south of the fires, has been blan­keted by smoke.

Col­lege foot­ball games in Berke­ley and Stan­ford are also planned for this week­end, and of­fi­cials from both schools are mon­i­tor­ing the sit­u­a­tions there as well.

If the NFL de­cides that con­di­tions in Oak­land are too un­healthy to play Sun­day, the Raiders game could be moved to Levi’s Sta­dium in Santa Clara. San Diego Mayor Kevin Faulconer has also of­fered Qual­comm Sta­dium, where the Charg­ers used to play be­fore re­lo­cat­ing to Los An­ge­les this year.

“It’s up to them to make the fi­nal de­ci­sion to ei­ther move us, pre­pare us to play here, or what not,” Raiders corner­back TJ Car­rie said. “But we have to con­tinue to prac­tice and play as if we’re go­ing to play here.”

Cow­boys: A fed­eral ap­peals court cleared the way for the NFL to im­pose a six-game sus­pen­sion on run­ning back Ezekiel El­liott over do­mes­tic vi­o­lence al­le­ga­tions, sid­ing with the league in the lat­est high-pro­file fight over its abil­ity to pun­ish play­ers for off-field be­hav­ior.

In a 2-1 de­ci­sion, the 5th U.S. Cir­cuit Court of Ap­peals panel in New Or­leans granted the league’s emer­gency re­quest to set aside an in­junc­tion and or­dered a district court in Texas to dis­miss El­liott’s case.

The NFL an­nounced that the sus­pen­sion was ef­fec­tive im­me­di­ately, though fur­ther ap­peals were pos­si­ble and the Cow­boys are not play­ing this week­end.

“We are cur­rently ex­plor­ing all of our le­gal op­tions and will make a de­ci­sion as to what is the best course of ac­tion in the next few days,” El­liott at­tor­ney Frank Salzano said.

The Cow­boys don’t play again un­til next Sun­day, Oct. 22, at San Fran­cisco. If El­liott’s le­gal team can’t put the sus­pen­sion on hold again, he won’t be el­i­gi­ble to play un­til Nov. 30 at home against Wash­ing­ton, a Thurs­day night game the week af­ter Thanks­giv­ing.

Ben­gals: Tight end Tyler Eifert will miss the rest of the sea­son with a back in­jury that puts his ca­reer in jeop­ardy.

The fifth-year veteran missed half of last sea­son with an­kle and back in­juries. He had surgery on a disc in his back last De­cem­ber. He ag­gra­vated it in the sec­ond game this sea­son, forc­ing him to con­sider an­other pro­ce­dure. He’s been in­ac­tive for the past three games and went on in­jured re­serve Thurs­day.

49ers: The team won’t be forc­ing their play­ers to stand dur­ing the na­tional an­them, safety Eric Reid said.

Reid, the first player to join Colin Kaeper­nick in protest last sea­son, said he had a con­ver­sa­tion re­cently with CEO Jed York, who in­di­cated he will con­tinue to sup­port his play­ers if they de­cide to kneel dur­ing the na­tional an­them to protest so­cial in­jus­tice.

Ti­tans: Wide re­ceiver Rishard Matthews said he would be done play­ing foot­ball when asked on Twit­ter if he would ac­cept a fine or penalty if the NFL in­sti­tuted a new rule for the na­tional an­them. He later deleted the tweet, but Matthews’ re­sponse to a re­porter from his ver­i­fied ac­count was cap­tured by a screen grab.

The start­ing re­ceiver has stayed in the locker room dur­ing the an­them through the last two games.

Rams: Line­backer Alec Ogle­tree agreed to a fouryear ex­ten­sion through 2021.

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