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FedEx has asked the Redskins to change their name


DC National Guard

FedEx has asked the Washington Redskins to change their name. This is a pretty big deal in the ongoing name change debate. There was a report this week that investors of PepsiCo, Nike, and FedEx asked the companies to end their relationships with the team unless the name was changed. Dan Snyder has always resisted any calls to change the team’s name, saying it would never happen. When he starts to lose significant money, it could cause a change in opinion.

FedEx calling for the Redskins to change their name, and even refer to them as the team in Washington is significant. Frederick Smith is the founder and CEO of FedEx, and is also a minority owner of the Redskins. FedEx bought the naming rights to the team’s stadium in 1999 after Snyder bought the team, paying $205 million for a 27 year deal. That deal runs through 2025.

There has been a big shift in public opinion following the murder of George Floyd by police in Minnesota, ongoing Black Lives Matters protests, and the call to remove/replace racist monuments/symbols/characters. The George Preston Marshall memorial statue was recently removed from RFK Stadium by the city. The Redskins also removed Marshall from the Ring of Fame, History Wall, and their website. The team is still looking for a site for their new stadium, but there have been reports that they won’t be able to return to the RFK site if they don’t change their name.

I have always felt that the only way that Dan Snyder would change the team’s name would be if the league forced him to do it. But if all of the team’s sponsors decide to end their relationships with the team, that is a significant blow to his revenue stream. NFL owners are generally insulated from financial hits due to the massive TV revenue machine they have built, but 2020 is a different year with the COVID-19 pandemic affecting all sports and all economies.


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