Goodell 'hopeful' Vikings, state government can work out deal for stadium

DANA POINT, Calif. -- The Minnesota Vikings say their stadium situation has risen on the NFL's agenda.

Speaking at the NFL Annual Meeting, league commissioner Roger Goodell acknowledged economic challenges to the goal of a new downtown Minneapolis facility. But Goodell said Monday he's "hopeful" talks between team and state can yield progress toward a solution. The Metrodome lease expires after the 2011 season.

Goodell cited new University of Minnesota and Twins stadiums as evidence of the Vikings' need for a new place to play. He said Gov. Tim Pawlenty "recognizes the importance of that."

Vikings vice president Lester Bagley said team owner Zygi Wilf met with Pawlenty last month. Bagley also has met several times with key Pawlenty staffers.

The Vikings were updating other league owners on their situation Tuesday.

Copyright 2009 by The Associated Press

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