Anticipation mounts ahead of Washington NFL team’s new name

Washington’s NFL franchise officially announced on Monday morning that it will drop the name “Redskins.” But the team didn’t say what its new name will be, allowing for a lot of speculation and unsolicited suggestions.

Along with arguably the most polarizing name in North American professional sports, the team is dropping its Indian head logo, bowing to recent pressure from sponsors and decades of criticism that they are offensive to Native Americans.

Now, a new name must be selected for one of the oldest and most storied teams in the National Football League, and it remains unclear how soon that will happen.

For now, the team name is still being used.

“Dan Snyder and Coach Rivera 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,” the team said in a statement.

The team announced it was taking a “thorough review” of the team’s name July 3.

Until a new name is announced, speculation grows over what the team will call itself.

The Washington Redtails

The Washington Redtails has gained some steam on social media, and a designer named Pete Rogers even mocked up some designs of a re-imagined team logo and uniform.

“The name ‘Redtails’ celebrates the WWII Tuskegee Airmen, who were the first African-American military aviators in the U.S. armed forces,” Rogers wrote. “The nickname ‘Redtails’ comes from their planes, which had a distinct crimson tail.”

Head coach Ron Rivera even mentioned honoring the military when discussing the team name change.

“This issue is of personal importance to me,” Rivera said, “and I look forward to working closely with Dan Snyder to make sure we continue the mission of honoring and supporting Native Americans and our Military.”

The Washington Warriors

Another name that has been floated is the Washington Warriors, as it would allow the team to keep some similar elements such as the arrow used in some of the team’s designs.

However, the name is drawing some backlash on social media.

“Folks tweeting about Washington Warriors with feathers and arrows on the logo missed the whole damn point,” Rebecca Nagle posted on Twitter.

“Native American cultures and our tribes are real, contemporary, diverse and ALIVE. We are not cartoons. And we are not mascots.”

The Washington Monuments

The Washington Monuments is another name being suggested on social media, which would make sense, since the Washington Monument is in located on D.C.’s National Mall.

Read more:

Other possible names popular with WTOP listeners include:

The Washington Redhawks

The Washington Redwolves

The Washington Generals

The rights to the Washington Generals name, which has been used for decades as the opponents to the Harlem Globetrotters, is currently owned by the company that owns the Globetrotters.

The Washington Federals

This was the name of D.C.’s United States Football League team, when it existed during the 1983-1984 season.

The Washington Admirals

The Washington Admirals is a Major League Quidditch franchise based in the D.C. area since 2015.

The Associated Press and CNN contributed to this report.

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Matt Small

Matt joined WTOP News at the start of 2020, after contributing to Washington’s top news outlet as an Associated Press journalist for nearly 18 years.

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