Erie County already owns the property surrounding the Bills stadium and existing practice facilities. (Derek Gee/Buffalo News)

Much can be gleaned from the Buffalo Bills sale process from those no longer involved in it.

The Buffalo News has learned at least two suitors from Los Angeles signed the nondisclosure agreement but abandoned pursuit upon discovering how much opposition there would be to moving the team.

The News has confirmed billionaire philanthropist Eli Broad signed the nondisclosure agreement to review the Bills' confidential data in contemplation of buying the team. Since the late 1990s, Broad has been vocal about the importance of bringing the NFL back to Los Angeles and has declared he's the man to do it.

But sources say Broad examined the Bills and came away discouraged about moving the team because the NFL and too many powerful politicians are against it.

Asked about his interest in a Bills purchase, Broad spokeswoman Karen Denne declined to comment aside from saying, "Mr. Broad is not interested in pursuing a purchase of the Buffalo Bills at this time."

Forbes estimates the 81-year-old Broad is worth $6.9 billion. He made much of his fortune in home construction and the life-insurance industry. Broad has donated billions to education and the Los Angeles arts community.

The News sent me to Los Angeles in May to write a story about what Bills fans have viewed as a doomsday scenario for generations. There has been a belief -- before Toronto emerged as a bigger threat -- that when Ralph Wilson died, the Bills would move to L.A.

But as Broad's withdrawal from a Bills pursuit symbolizes, trying to relocate the team is not a sensible endeavor.

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