Washington Football Team's Name Is What You Expected

Meet the Washington Commanders
By Kate Seamons,  Newser Staff
Posted Feb 2, 2022 7:27 AM CST
Washington Football Team's Name Is What You Expected
A Washington Commanders sign is shown as they unveil their NFL football team's new identity, Wednesday, Feb. 2, 2022, in Landover, Md. The new name comes 18 months after the once-storied franchise dropped its old moniker following decades of criticism that it was offensive to Native Americans.   (AP Photo/Patrick Semansky)

A domain name transfer was a clue that turned out to be correct. The Washington Football Team will henceforth be known as the Commanders. The team made the announcement Wednesday on the Today Show, some 18 month after ditching the use of Redskins, which had been the team's moniker for 87 years. The Washington Post reports the name is a nod to Washington’s military ties, and it wasn't exactly a well-kept secret. WUSA9 reports that on Tuesday night, SKY9 flew over the team's FedEx Field and spied a "COMMANDERS" sign (see it here). And ESPN notes "team president Jason Wright and coach Ron Rivera had stressed during the ... search that it would like to incorporate the military because of its connection to the nation's capital."

The team showed off new uniforms and a new logo on Wednesday as well. ESPN offers a short recent history regarding the change, pointing out that while owner Dan Snyder in 2013 told USA Today in 2013 to "put it in all caps" that a name change would never occur, the tide turned in 2020 following protests related to the murder of George Floyd and a letter 87 major investors and shareholders sent to sponsors FedEx, PepsiCo, and Nike that June that asked them to sever ties with the team unless a name change happened. The AP notes that while the Commanders have joined the Cleveland Guardians in leaving its Native American-linked name behind, the NFL's Kansas City Chiefs, NHL's Chicago Blackhawks, and MLB's Atlanta Braves have no plans to follow suit. (More Washington Commanders stories.)

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