WFT president says list of names substantially narrowed down

Jul 29, 2021, 1:35 AM | Updated: 3:28 pm

RICHMOND, Va. (AP) — Washington Football President Jason Wright said Thursday the organization has significantly trimmed the list of potential team names, with the unveiling expected before the 2022 NFL draft.

In an interview with The Associated Press at a community event coinciding with training camp in Virginia’s capital, Wright said Washington is trying to be transparent with the rebranding process. He declined to reveal how many names were still under consideration.

“We have them narrowed down substantially,” Wright told The AP. “So, there’s a small set of names that have been crafted into full visuals and logos and all that stuff that we’re going back and forth on.”

The Washington Football Team is the official name for a second consecutive season after the club abandoned its old moniker in July 2020. Wright, who was hired in August, has said the new name will not have any Native American connotations or imagery.

Wright has blogged about choosing a name that honors the franchise’s history, which includes three Super Bowl titles. Asked directly if a name had already been selected, he said, “I don’t want to scoop our team.”

“It’s like a family heirloom and stewarding the movement of family heirloom is a weighty thing,” he told Washington radio station WTOP on Thursday. “It’s incredibly important we do the best we can to steward this right.”

Long before Major League Baseball’s Cleveland Indians abruptly announced on Twitter last week that they are becoming the Guardians, Washington has been focused on transparency as part of the process so that fans can understand how the final decision was reached. More than 25,000 names were submitted, with alumni, season-ticket holders, women, military members and children among the digital focus groups the team canvassed for opinions.

“We want it to be as open as it can possibly be,” Wright said. “We got a ton of input from fans over all the different stages of this process and continue to. We want people to be able to see where their input and where their fingerprints are on the entire process.”

Washington is working with creative agency Code & Theory to rebrand an organization that recently underwent an independent investigation into workplace conduct and is in the midst of a culture change from the top down. Tanya Snyder has taken over day-to-day operation of the organization for the next several months, with husband Dan focusing on a new stadium deal and other business ventures.

Wright and Tanya Snyder watched some of practice together Thursday. He called her a detailed listener and a savvy business leader who is “incredibly decisive in moments of ambiguity.”

“That sort of confident and assertive leadership is great for us in all the different things we’re navigating,” he said.

CAMP UPDATE

After holding training camp in Richmond from 2013-2019, there is not currently an agreement in place for Washington — whatever the name is by then — to return next year or beyond. Mayor Levar Stoney is “bullish” on Washington keeping at least part of camp in his city, adding, “I’m going to do everything I can to make sure that happens.”

Washington is looking for a new stadium site, with the lease at FedEx Field in Landover, Maryland expiring in 2027. Locations in Maryland, Virginia and the District of Columbia are under consideration.

When that stadium is done, the team is expected to hold camp there, but from 2022 until then is still up in the air. One possibility is a deal to keep camp in Richmond if somewhere in Northern Virginia is picked for the stadium, though Stoney does not see the issues as necessarily tied together.

“I don’t think they’re wedded to having football, the training camp and the stadium in the same place,” he said at Hotchkiss Field Community Center, where the team announced it was donating $75,000 for improvements. “I’d be totally fine if whatever decision they made that they at least continue their camp here in Richmond.”

Washington is doing four days of camp in Richmond this year before holding most of it at the regular practice facility in Ashburn, Virginia, near Dulles Airport.

MORE ON COVID LIST

Washington defensive lineman Matt Ioannidis, wide receiver Curtis Samuel, and cornerback Chris Miller joined offensive tackle Cornelius Lucas on the COVID-19 reserve list. Washington is the least-vaccinated team in the NFL at roughly 60%.

Reigning AP Defensive Rookie of the Year Chase Young wore a mask when speaking with reporters Thursday after a training camp practice, which is required for unvaccinated players, and would not give his status.

“I’m not going to disclose my personal information,” Young said. “I hope you all can respect that, but I respect everybody’s decision. What I’m going to do — I’m just going to make sure the protocols that the NFL and NFLPA guidelines they put together, I’m just going to make sure me and my teammates follow that the best we can.”

Coach Ron Rivera, who is immune deficient after undergoing treatments for a form of skin cancer last year, said he is wearing a mask around unvaccinated players. Quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick on Thursday said he is vaccinated.

___

More AP NFL: https://apnews.com/NFL and https://twitter.com/AP_NFL

Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

AP

Sam Ryder acknowledges the gallery after finishing his round on the 18th hole of the South Course a...
Associated Press

Ryder extends Farmers lead to 3, Rahm gets hot on windy day

SAN DIEGO (AP) — Sam Ryder extended his lead to three shots in the Farmers Insurance Open with a 4-under 68 in challenging wind in the second round Thursday on Torrey Pines’ South Course while Jon Rahm had an eagle and three straight birdies late in his 5-under 67 on the easier North Course to […]
18 hours ago
Alexa Knierim and Brandon Frazier compete in the pairs short program at the U.S. figure skating cha...
Associated Press

World champs Knierim, Frazier dazzle in Day 1 at nationals

SAN JOSE, Calif. (AP) — They held their on-ice embrace a little longer this time, kneeling in an end pose moments after a near-flawless short program. Overwhelming favorite and reigning world champions Alexa Knierim and Brandon Frazier scored a personal-best 81.96 on Thursday for a commanding lead in the first day of the U.S. Figure […]
18 hours ago
Los Angeles Lakers forward LeBron James smiles during the second half of an NBA basketball game aga...
Associated Press

LeBron, Giannis chosen as captains for NBA All-Star Game

LeBron James is closing in on Kareem Abdul-Jabbar’s NBA career scoring record. And now, he has caught Abdul-Jabbar on another page of the All-Star record book. James was announced Thursday as an NBA All-Star for the 19th time, the Los Angeles Lakers’ star tying Abdul-Jabbar for the most selections in league history. James — the […]
18 hours ago
Dallas Cowboys head coach Mike McCarthy pushes a cameraman away while walking off the field after a...
Associated Press

Quinn returning to lead defense as Cowboys shuffle coaches

FRISCO, Texas (AP) — A shuffling of the coaching staff for the Dallas Cowboys won’t include defensive coordinator Dan Quinn, who is returning after another year of receiving interest from teams seeking head coaches. Coach Mike McCarthy said the club’s decision not to renew the contracts of six members of his staff, including one with […]
18 hours ago
The Meyer Shank Racing team, from left, Helio Castroneves, Simon Pagenaud, Michael Shank, Colin Bra...
Associated Press

Meyer Shank Racing aims for 2nd consecutive Rolex 24 victory

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. (AP) — Michael Shank bookended last year’s sports car season by winning the most prestigious endurance race in North America and then the IMSA championship. In between, he expanded his IndyCar program and followed a scrupulous plan to build Meyer Shank Racing into an elite motorsports organization. Now he’s set to lead […]
18 hours ago
San Francisco 49ers head coach Kyle Shanahan speaks at a news conference before an NFL football pra...
Associated Press

Final 4 NFL teams all feature offensive-minded head coaches

SANTA CLARA, Calif. (AP) — Chris Foerster had spent nearly two decades as an assistant in the NFL when he first crossed paths with Kyle Shanahan long before he became one of the NFL’s most-accomplished play-callers. Shanahan was in his third year as an offensive coordinator in the NFL when Foerster joined head coach Mike […]
2 days ago
WFT president says list of names substantially narrowed down