ST. LOUIS - SEPTEMBER 12: A general view of the Edward Jones Dome prior to the NFL season opener between the Arizona Cardinals and the St. Louis Rams at the Edward Jones Dome on September 12 2010 in St. Louis Missouri. (Photo by Dilip Vishwanat/Getty Images)2
St. Louis Rams fans, emphasis on St. Louis in this case, already have the year 2014 circled on their calendar. That's the year that the team's lease on the Edward Jones Dome hits a trigger clause that allows the Rams out of their lease early if the stadium is not among the top quartile of league facilities (it won't be). 2014 also happens to be the last one for the Dome's naming rights deal with investment firm Edward Jones.
2002 was the first year of a twelve year naming rights deal with Edward Jones (hat tip to Sando for the reminder). I doubt the 2014 marker was pure coincidence. By today's standards, the deal isn't a very lucrative one, paying an average of $2.65 million per year. Compare that to the 20-year, $200 million deal Farmer's Insurance made with the prospective downtown LA venue that entertainment giant AEG is trying to build. Finding a new naming rights partner will be a key to solving the riddle of the Rams new home beyond 2014. Something Stan Kroenke is doubtlessly aware of as he starts to think about stadium plans.
But enough about business, let's have some fun (also because I'm dealing with a little temporary writers block on this year in review stuff). Last week, I engaged in a little good natured ribbing with our friends at Field Gulls, SBN's Seattle Seahawks blog. They challenged their Twitter followers to come up with a better name than CenturyLink Field. I suggested a few items, my favorite being "The House That Whitehurst Built."
So let's get an early start on 2014. Come up with a new name for the Rams' home turf, wherever that may be. Drop us a line via Twitter using the hashtag #RamsHome2015. Feel free to include your predictions for the metro area where that new home might be located.