By Alison Keller, Columnist
The NFL has released Washington’s new team name, the Washington Commanders, and some fans do not approve. Before the name was officially released, the new name was accidentally leaked, and even then fans were outraged.
One of the oldest franchises in the NFL, dating back to 1933, had been known as their previous name, the Redskins, for 87 years. The team removed the name back in July 2020 due to backlash and being called offensive to Native Americans.
There are a lot of mixed reactions about the rebrand, which launched on Feb. 2. One Twitter user thought the decision was made by “pointing their finger towards a dictionary and wherever it landed they said ‘yep that’ll work.’ ” Another user describes how no matter what Washington’s new name is, that everyone will hate it.
Before the name was leaked, fans speculated with other possible names such as the Washington Presidents or the Washington Red Wolves. According to a Twitter poll, more than 85% of fans dislike [the] Washington name.
But there are some fans that do approve of the new name. One fan wrote that the name gives the team “a sense of authority.” A fanpage of the Commanders tweeted how the new name is “fire” and they are in hopes that the new name could possibly lead the team to a winning season.
According to a local Washington news source, Pro Bowl defensive tackle Jonathan Allen reported that his teammates “were 50/50 on the new name and uniform.” Some of the athletes that are on the team took to Twitter by expressing their excitement about the new name and uniform.
One of Washington’s biggest stars, defensive end Chase Young, is another player to speak out about the new name. When talking with USA Today Sports, Young was asked to grade some of the possible team names, that included the Commandards. Young “simply shook his head” and said “F.”
Growing up in a football family that are die-hard Washington fans, I always will know the team as the Redskins. I believe that it will take Washington fans a while to adjust from saying the “Washington Football Team” to the “Commanders.” For me, I think the name “Washington Redskins” is always going to be stuck into my head.
I believe that this new rebrand of the franchise could be a way of having a “fresh start” to having new legacies and a new era of the team. With Washington’s new change, they will still be representing the DMV area through the legendary burgundy and gold.