This post has been updated.
Just how seriously, and just how long the Chargers, have been toying with moving to Los Angeles remains a question that’s been difficult to answer. Now, via a nugget from the Los Angeles Times’ Sam Farmer, it appears the Chargers were more serious about a move for a longer time than previously known (emphasis ours):
The Rose Bowl bowed out of the interim stadium derby, but the Coliseum is still in play. The NFL shouldn’t have much trouble striking a deal there, as the Chargers quietly got far down the road in negotiations with that venue last year.
Farmer was talking about where an NFL team would play in Los Angeles while a new stadium for the Chargers, Rams, Raiders or any combination of the three was being built. The league needs a temporary site in L.A. because no one wants to have a lame-duck season or two in a city that’s losing a team.
If the Chargers were close to a deal with L.A.’s Memorial Coliseum last year, that would mean the team had been making legitimate moves to leave long before San Diego leaders opened talks about a new stadium here and long before the team’s surprise announcement in February that it was pursuing a joint project in Carson with the Oakland Raiders.
Update: Matt Awbrey, a spokesman for Mayor Kevin Faulconer, is displeased: “Unfortunately this is another example that reveals the team was strategizing a move to LA much earlier than anyone was aware of, including local leaders and the San Diego public.”