The Raiders have been working for months to move a preseason home game to Canada. They evaluated different sites and had some starts and stops, but finally got an agreement to play a Week 3 exhibition against Green Bay in Winnipeg.
Sources told NBC Sports Bay Area that the game will be played on Aug. 22 at Investors Group Field, home of the CFL’s Winnipeg Blue Bombers. The Raiders officially announced the game in a press release Wednesday morning.
The Valour FC soccer team, of the Canadian Premier League is also scheduled to play there on Aug. 22, but that game will be rescheduled or moved.
The Raiders have long been looking to ship an exhibition game away from home, which decreases 2019 rent to play this season at Oakland Coliseum and provides a money-making opportunity in a NFL-hungry market where the league has never played. The Packers should help the draw, considering Green Bay’s proximity to Winnipeg.
Fans won’t have to choose between the NFL and the CFL, with the Blue Bombers set to play an away game on Aug. 23.
The Raiders originally looked to play this game in Regina at Mosaic Stadium, home of the CFL’s Saskatchewan Roughriders, but scheduling conflicts created an impasse.
They also considered Edmonton after that, but zeroed in on Winnipeg a while back despite no formal announcement on this exhibition game, the only hole in the NFL 2019 schedule.
Playing at this neutral site means the Raiders will play three exhibitions away from home and only eight more times in Oakland before 2020’s expected relocation to Las Vegas.
They have also given up a regular-season home game to play the Chicago Bears in London on Oct. 6.