The Washington Redskins are no longer the Redskins. The team revealed on Monday (July 13) that they are undergoing a name and logo change. However, they did not announce the new name.
“On July 3rd, we announced the commencement of a thorough review of the team’s name,” the statement began. “That review has begun in earnest. As part of this process, we want to keep our sponsors, fans and community apprised of our thinking as we go forward. Today, we are announcing we will be retiring the Redskins name and logo upon completion of this review.”
Head coach Ron Rivera and team owner Dan Snyder are “working closely to develop a new name and design approach that will enhance the standing of our proud, tradition-rich franchise and inspire our sponsors, fans, and community for the next 100 years.”
See the full statement, below.
FedEx has the naming rights to the former Washington Redskins’ stadium. The Washington Post reported that the company sent a private letter to the team. They threatened to remove their signage and name if they didn’t change their name and logo in time for the 2021 season.
Additionally, Amazon and Nike have removed the team’s merchandise from their stores. Similarly, Walmart and Target have threatened to do the same if they do not change their branding.
ESPN reported that a letter was sent to the team’s sponsors FedEx, PepsiCo, and Nike asking them to stop doing business with them. The letter was signed by 87 investors with $620 billion invested into the brand.
Almost all of the fan response has been positive towards the change. Finally, countless social media posts echo the same sentiment, that it was about time.
“The NFL and Dan Snyder have finally made the right call and Change the Mascot commends them for it,” Oneida Nation representative and head of the Change the Mascot campaign, Ray Halbritter, told ESPN in a statement. “This is a good decision for the country — not just Native peoples — since it closes a painful chapter of denigration and disrespect toward Native Americans and other people of color. Future generations of Native youth will no longer be subjected to this offensive and harmful slur every Sunday during football season.”
“We have made clear from the start that this movement was never about political correctness, but seeking to prevent unnecessary harm to our youth, since we know from social scientists the many harmful effects this mascot has had on Native Americans’ self-image,” the statement continued. “Today marks the start of a new chapter for the NFL and the Washington franchise, beginning a new legacy that can be more inclusive for fans of all backgrounds.”