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Sports News

Rivera: Washington months away from new team name

FILE PHOTO: Pete Rodriguez looks over Redskins branded merchandise on display in a sports store as an announcement was made that the Washington NFL team will be abandoning its team name and logo that has widely been seen as a racist slur against Native Americans after mounting pressure from sponsors and the wider public, in Sterling, VA, U.S., July 13, 2020. REUTERS/Leah Millis

Fans of the Washington Football Team shouldn’t expect a permanent name or a new logo for their NFL club anytime soon.

Coach Ron Rivera told “CBS This Morning” on Friday that rebranding the franchise long known as the Redskins could take up to 18 months, meaning it could be known simply as the Washington Football Team even to start the 2021 season.

“The biggest thing that we’ve learned is that this is going to take steps,” Rivera told CBS. “This can’t happen automatically. We’re going to have to go through the process. ... Truthfully, this is going to be about a 16- to 18-month process, to do it the right way and really not miss the opportunity to rebrand ourselves -- hopefully for the next 100 years.”

The franchise announced Washington Football Team as its temporary name on Thursday. The familiar burgundy and gold team colors will remain, while player numbers will adorn their helmets instead of the Redskins logo, which was considered racist by many.

“There’s so much tradition and history with this football team that to change the colors would kind of distract from what this team has done in terms of its past history with the championships that it’s won,” Rivera said.

The team had been called the Redskins since 1933, but team owner Daniel Snyder announced earlier this month that he and his staff would review the name and consider a change after years of refusal.

Washington has won three Super Bowl titles, but the most recent came in 1992 with a 37-24 victory over the Buffalo Bills. Quarterback Mark Rypien was the game MVP.

The team is scheduled to open the season at home on Sept. 13 against the Philadelphia Eagles.

--Field Level Media

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