Accompanied by a new logo, the changes come about 18 months after the franchise dropped the “Redskins” name due to racist connotations.
The team has competed as the Washington Soccer Team for the past two seasons but will continue to use burgundy and yellow tones.
Former Washington linebacker Joe Theismann appeared to have a new name leaked early on Monday after calling the team “The Commanders” on CBS Sports Radio’s “The DA Show.”
Theismann’s revelation appeared to have been confirmed on Tuesday after helicopter footage above Washington’s FedEx Field emerged showing the new name affixed to a sign inside the team’s store. .
Last month, group president Jason Wright excluded the new name change to “Wolves” or “RedWolves” due to trademark issues.
“We are delighted about the final choice that aligns with our values, carries our rich history, represents the region and most importantly, is inspired and informed by you. , our fans,” Wright said.
The change stems from Washington’s decision to drop the “Redskins” name and emblem after decades of criticism from Native American groups, who deemed it an obscenity and insult to color. skin.
Once one of the NFL’s top franchises, Washington has won just two playoffs since Dan Snyder bought the team in 1999 and has been the cause of constant turmoil and scandal in recent years. this.
The Rise and Fall of ‘Redskins’
The team was founded in 1932 as the Boston Braves, but team founder George Preston Marshall changed the name to the “Redskins” a year later to avoid confusion with the baseball team’s Boston Braves. The team moved to Washington DC in 1937.
The name related to skin color, as well as its logo depicting a Native American with fur in his hair, was criticized at least from 1971-72. Still, the team has staunchly resisted efforts to change its name, and Washington’s owner, Dan Snyder, told USA Today in 2013 that he would “never” do so.
However, the franchise faces new pressure to finally do so in 2020 after the police killing of George Floyd sparked mass protests seeking to end racism. systematic race. FedEx, which has the naming rights to the NFL stadium in Washington, asked the team to change the name in response to growing pressure from investors. Companies including Nike, Amazon, Target and Walmart said they would stop selling the team’s merchandise.
Under this business pressure, Washington announced a review of its team’s name in July 2020 and a week later said it would drop the “Redskins” moniker altogether. Since then, the franchise has moved to the common name “Washington Soccer Team” with the large “W” as its symbol.
Other sports teams with Native American names face similar pressures. The MLB’s Cleveland Indians changed their name to the Guardian, while the MLB’s Atlanta Braves and the NHL’s Chicago Blackhawks resisted such a conversion.
In addition to the team name, the Washington franchise has other big problems with how it works.
The NFL fined the Washington Soccer Team $10 million last year after concluding an independent investigation found the club’s work environment to be “very unprofessional,” particularly toward women. according to a news release from the union.
The fine comes after 15 former female employees and two journalists defending the team accused team employees of sexual harassment and verbal abuse.
“Bullying and intimidation are frequent and many describe this culture as one of fear, and many female employees report experiencing sexual harassment and a general lack of respect in the workplace.” NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell said in the statement.
Snyder also apologized and accepted responsibility for the workplace culture in a statement, but he remained in charge of the team.
The NFL has declined to make the investigative report public. However, as part of its investigation, the NFL obtained emails between coach Jon Gruden and former Washington president Bruce Allen in which the coach made racist, homophobic remarks homosexual and incorrect.
The emails were leaked to the media in October 2021, forcing Gruden to step down as head coach of the Las Vegas Raiders.
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https://abc13.com/washington-football-team-name-announcement-commanders-fedex-field/11532104/ Washington Commanders: NFL football team reveals new name