Could the Chargers be moving back to San Diego by 2019?
The odds say no, but let's take a look at the possibility of the Chargers and the NFL actually doing something right by the fans for a change.
The only way for the Chargers to head back to San Diego soon is if a group of investors from San Diego County were to overwhelm Dean Spanos with an offer. For sure, Spanos would be stubborn to sell even if the offer was astronomical.
Another roadblock here would be Roger Goodell and the NFL. The NFL in its current state is much like David Stern and the NBA was 10 years ago. They only deal with markets willing to invest in a new stadium. In other words, the chances of the Chargers ever playing a game in SDCCU Stadium (formerly Qualcomm Stadium) ever again are slim to none and slim just got hit by a Coaster train.
The Ringer.com did a great job outlining how important PSLs are in NFL markets in 2017 this week, and it made clear that a short-term stay back in San Diego would not make much financial sense for anyone (and as San Diego football fans have come to find out, that's really all this is about - money).
Even more stubborn than Spanos is Goodell (i.e. the Tom Brady/Deflategate case), who has lusted for two teams in the Los Angeles market for decades. He will not want to see this fail.
"I think the Commissioner is ready to do what we can to help build that fan base and the market," NFL Vice President of Communications Joe Lockhart told CBS Sports. "Again, I think that the club has made it clear that they didn't expect this to happen overnight. It's a process, and they're building toward what we all believe will be a spectacular new venue that will support both [the Rams and Chargers] there in a very strong way."
Indeed, the contracts tied into the new Rams and Chargers stadium being built is yet another major obstacle in the Chargers ever moving back to San Diego. For now, it's a pipe dream - but if the thousands of empty seats in LA continue to pop up over months and years, the opportunity could present itself.