OAKLAND -- Don't expect NFL owners to join the chorus of cynicism about a possible Raiders move to Las Vegas, but that doesn't mean they would approve it.
As Raiders owner Mark Davis and casino tycoon Sheldon Adelson met Friday to discuss Adelson's planned $1 billion indoor football stadium near the UNLV campus, NFL officials instructed team public relation directors not to say much about the prospect of a team in the nation's gambling capital.
In a four-paragraph memo, obtained by the NFL.com's Albert Breer, the league advised that any comments on the situation note that three-fourths of team owners must approve a franchise relocation and that it would be speculative for any team official to comment given that no formal proposal has been submitted.
Moreover, the memo advises that "there is no prohibition under league rules on a team moving to any particular city."
The Las Vegas stadium could be a potential landing spot for the Raiders, who are waiting out the San Diego Chargers decision on whether to join the Rams in Los Angeles or remain long term in San Diego. The Chargers said Friday that they would not be moving to Los Angeles for the 2016 season.
If the Chargers stay in San Diego, the Raiders would consider joining the Rams in L.A. But if the Chargers move to Los Angeles, the Raiders might turn to Las Vegas or San Diego as a potential home.
The prospect of the Raiders moving to Las Vegas was quickly dismissed by many NFL watchers familiar with the league's unease with legal sports gambling.
Mark Ganis, who has put together financing for numerous NFL stadium projects, said the NFL has not viewed Las Vegas favorably because of its embrace of open sports gambling. The league's memo, he added, doesn't indicate that position is about to change.
"It is silent about Las Vegas and only says the process will be the same for any city," Ganis said. "The memo's (purpose) seems to be to avoid having owners take stances one way or the other before the matter is brought to the league. After the recent process (concerning Los Angeles), that approach makes a great deal of sense."
Contact Matthew Artz at 510-208-6435. The Los Angeles Daily News contributed to this report.