Team president Bruce Allen asserted that the Washington Redskins refuse to change their name even if it means sacrificing a new home stadium.
The Redskins, who currently play at FedEx Field in Maryland, announced that they are in the preliminary stages of searching for a new home field. Virginia, Washington D.C., and Maryland have been named as potential sites according to ESPN.
When reporters asked Allen if he would consider changing the name of the team as a condition to securing a new home for the Redskins, he replied, “No.”
The Redskins name remains controversial. Native Indian groups, politicians, and journalists continue to condemn Allen and team owner Dan Snyder for their unwavering commitment to keeping it as the team’s identity.
Washington D.C. appears unlikely to welcome the franchise if the team remains steadfast in keeping the Redskins moniker. Jessica Kershaw, a Department of the Interior spokeswoman, told reporters that Interior Secretary Sally Jewell, finds the team name unacceptable: ”Secretary Jewell has been clear that she considers the Washington football team’s name a relic of the past and believes it should be changed.”
Washington Redskins owner Dan Snyder continues to support using the Redskins name. He insists that he has the support of many Native Americans who believe that the name celebrates the history and the traditions of America’s indigenous people.
Last year Snyder told former Washington Redskins tight end Chris Cooley, co-host of ESPN 980’s The Drive, that the logo for the Redskins was crafted in 1971 by a Native American chief of the Blackfoot Nation who stated, “I want to create a logo for the team, because we really think it should represent us.”
Governors in both Maryland and Virginia have said Washington’s nickname would not hinder trying to get a stadium built, reported ESPN. The Redskins own FedEX Field and the land in Landover. Their lease with Prince George’s county runs through 2026.