Written By Dan Bernstein
The Eagles will face the Washington Football Team this weekend, not the Redskins.
Washington bears a clunky name after dropping its old, racially insensitive moniker too late in the offseason to create an entirely new brand. But the NFL franchise doesn’t intend to be mascot-less for long — it could have a new name as early as 2020, though logistical issues might slow down the process.
In addition to finding a name and logo, Washington must determine whether to keep its old color scheme of burgundy and gold or pursue a more comprehensive reinvention of its identity.
As the Washington Football Team tries to figure out who it is at the most basic level, its owner, Dan Snyder, continues to push for a new stadium in the D.C./Maryland/Virginia area. That process has also been arduous.
Here’s a guide for when the Washington Football Team will be called something different and what steps it needs to take in order to get there:
When will the Washington Football Team get a new name?
The main holdup for the Washington Football Team in finding its next name is a trademark fight. While the organization would love to announce its choice for 2021, there’s no guarantee it will have its preferred name locked up by then. People have filed trademarks for more than 30 potential names, anticipating this moment before the franchise, and are set to take Washington to court over the trademarks in attempt to receive money for the rights.
A Virginia man named Martin McCaulay owns the bulk of those trademarks.
Once the trademark issue is settled, the Washington Football Team must find a logo, color scheme and uniform design. Companies are meticulous about identity changes, testing out the appeals of various options behind closed doors to focus groups and consultants who specialize in branding. But as long as the trademark fight doesn’t spill into next summer, the necessary creative choices should come together before 2021.
Why did the Redskins become the Washington Football Team?
The team changed its name over the summer when longstanding outcry over identifying as a racial slur became financially threatening to owner Dan Snyder. FedEx, the sponsor that holds the organization’s naming rights, formally urged Snyder to step away from “Redskins.” Investors joined the call to remove the slur.
Washington Football Team name change options
The Washington Football Team has remained quiet about the names its most aggressively pursuing, but that hasn’t stopped people from trying to find clues or making educated guesses based on things of significance in the D.C. area.
- Red Wolves
- Red Clouds