As hopes for Regina NFL game fade, Riders statement says team wasn't opposed
August game between Oakland Raiders and Green Bay Packers had been floated as a possibility
It doesn't look like an NFL pre-season game proposed for Mosaic Stadium in Regina this summer will happen after all.
The Roughriders released a statement Tuesday to clarify the team's position after reports the team was opposed to the game. The statement denied that was the case.
The team said it did raise concerns over a short turnaround time between the proposed date and the Riders' own regular season game.
The Riders are scheduled to host the Ottawa Redblacks one day later and were not optimistic the stadium could be converted back to CFL standards in time.
"The Riders, along with the Canadian Football League, identified significant risks that the stadium would not be set to provide an outstanding game experience for fans, Club sponsors and the league's broadcast partner in the short turnaround time allotted," said a statement from the Roughriders.
It appears the NFL and the Winnipeg Football Club are working on a deal to host a game in Winnipeg, according to the Canadian Press.
No commitment has been made but the Bombers "always exploring opportunities to host events at Investors Group Field."
Mosaic Stadium operator defends team
The club said it would support potential alternative dates that did not present a risk to a previously scheduled game.
The Regina Exhibition Association Limited, which runs Mosaic Stadium, responded with a written statement defending the team's involvement in the process.
"I strongly dispute any suggestion that the Saskatchewan Roughriders have acted as a barrier in this process," said president Tim Reid.
The Oakland Raiders were looking to play a pre-season game against the Green Bay Packers in Regina on Friday, Aug. 23.
Reid confirmed there is currently no contract with the NFL.
He said his organization has been in discussions with an "external promoter" over the potential of hosting an NFL game at Mosaic Stadium.
"I can say with absolute clarity that the Saskatchewan Roughriders have been collaborative throughout this process," he said.
Reid said a contract is necessary for anyone who wants to rent space at the Regina stadium.
With files from Glenn Reid and The Canadian Press