Redskins to retire name following review

The Washington Redskins NFL American football team has announced that it will be retiring its name and logo following a thorough review.

The Redskins announced on July 3 that it would be reviewing the controversial name after several of the District of Columbia’s top officials warned owner Daniel Snyder that there is no chance of the team being allowed to move to the RFK Stadium site unless the moniker is dropped.

The franchise won three Super Bowls in the 1980s and early 1990s during its time at RFK Stadium before moving in 1997 to the 82,000-seat FedExField, five miles east of Washington, DC in the state of Maryland.

RFK Stadium is federally owned and the venue is currently undergoing demolition work, which is set to be completed by 2021. Snyder has reportedly been considering the site for a possible return when the team’s lease at FedExField expires in 2027, but the ‘Redskins’ moniker has been at the centre of a long-running dispute over claims of ethnic stereotyping.

FedEx, which has sponsored the team’s stadium since 1999 and has a deal in place until 2025, also called for the ‘Redskins’ moniker to be dropped earlier this month. A report in AdWeek stated that FedEx, along with a number of other global enterprises such as Nike and PepsiCo, had been lobbied by a group of investment firms to end their sponsorship agreements with the team unless its name is changed.

The team has now announced that it will be retiring the name and logo upon completion of the review process. Snyder and team coach Ron Rivera will work closely to develop a name and design approach that will “enhance the standing” of the franchise.

The announcement is set to lead to fresh speculation over a potential return to the RFK Stadium site. Prior to the team’s July 3 announcement, DC Deputy Mayor John Falcicchio had said that there was “no viable path” for the team to return without first changing its name. DC Mayor Muriel Bowser said in a news conference yesterday that “Washington’s football team should be playing in Washington”.

It is not clear when the team’s new name will be announced. The Washington Post newspaper reported that the team is considering a generic temporary name such as ‘Washington Football Club’.

Image: Events DC