Kroenke bid could gain momentum at owners meeting

The business of who will own the St. Louis Rams will be at the heart of a future gathering of NFL owners.

Today, front and center will be a vote on where Super Bowl XLVIII in 2014 will be held with New York the odds-on favorite.

But the Rams and the man bidding to take full control of the team – Missouri businessman Stan Kroenke – will be discussed at the meetings in Irving, Texas. From the sounds of things, he’ll gain some momentum.

“Everybody wants him as an owner, I can tell you," New Orleans Saints owner Tom Benson told Jim Thomas of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch.

A strong endorsement from any owner would be a boost. A strong endorsement from the chairman of the finance committee, the seat Benson holds, means even more. The finance committee met with Kroenke on Monday afternoon to gather some information, per the report.

"He's been in the league for quite a while, but as a minority owner, not the majority owner," Benson said. "So there's a lot of questions, that's all."

Kroenke has asked the NFL for a grace period in order for him to fully comply with the league’s cross-ownership rules. Kroenke also owns the NBA’s Denver Nuggets and the NHL’s Colorado Avalanche. What Kroenke plans to do to get in compliance remains to be seen. It has been speculated that he will sell the Nuggets and Avalanche to his wife Ann, who is even wealthier than he is as a member of the Walton family, the founders of Wal-Mart. Previously, the NFL granted Wayne Huizenga a grace period when he had the Miami Dolphins and also owned the Florida Marlins of MLB and the Florida Panthers of the NHL.

Kroenke has owned 40 percent of the organization and exercised his option to purchase the remaining portion when Chip Rosenbloom and Lucia Rodriguez put the club up for sale.

"I'm optimistic that we will come to a resolution before the preseason," Rosenbloom told Thomas. "I think it's good for the league, it's good for us, it's good for Stan, and it's good for St. Louis. I really believe it. Now can there be obstacles? I guess."

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