Roger Goodell says Washington Redskins name change up to owner

Aug 19, 2013; Landover, MD, USA; Washington Redskins cornerback E.J. Biggers (30) is shown with the NFL heads up logo on his helmet before the game against the Pittsburgh Steelers at FedEX Field. Mandatory Credit: Brad Mills-USA TODAY Sports

NFL commissioner Roger Goodell told a Washington D.C. radio station on Wednesday that any decision to change the Washington Redskins name would be up to the teams’ owner, Dan Snyder.

Goodell, who lived in Washington D.C. in his early age, says he was a Redskins fan and understands the “history and tradition” of the name, according to Chris Lingebach of WJFK-FM in Washington. However, he did seem to accept that some fans may offended by the name.

“I think what we have to do though is we have to listen,” Goodell said. ”If one person is offended, we have to listen. Ultimately it is Dan (Synder)’s decision. But it’s something that I want all of us to go out and make sure we’re listening to our fans, listening to people of a different view, and making sure that we continue to do what’s right to make sure that team represents the strong tradition and history that it has for so many years.”

Goodell has defended the name in the past, and wrote a letter to congress back in June claiming the name represents ”a unifying force that stands for strength, courage, pride and respect.” However, in this recent statement Goodell seems to be washing his hands of the matter, saying it isn’t up to the league to decide on the name.

The Oneida Tribe of Indians of Wisconsin will protest the Redskins/Packers game in Green Bay this weekend, according to the Green Bay Press Gazette. In a radio ad run in New York, one Oneida tribe member says “We do not deserve to be called redskins… We deserve to be treated as what we are — Americans.”

Topics: Roger Goodell, Washington Redskins

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  • martin yin

    It’s The Washington Redskins…not the Oneida Redskins or Wisconsin Redskins…

    • Roy Phillips

      When a team’s nickname is racist, it’s racist and it doesn’t matter that the team is from one area and the people it unfairly portrays and insults are from another area. Put it this way: If there was an NFL team whose nickname was a common racial epithet once used to describe people from Poland and people from that country objected, you couldn’t very well expect to quiet the unrest by pointing out that this was a Pennsylvania team, not a Polish team.

      • martin yin

        Though I don’t consider Redskins a racist slur I must say I completely agree with you and take back my thoughtless statement.

        • Roy Phillips

          it’s not really up to just anyone to judge whether an epithet is offensive; rather it’s up to those at whom that name is obviously directed. I had a friend in high school who had a nickname he hated, and it was obvious he didn’t like that name. most of his friends were oblivious to how he felt until he was called that name in a classroom one day. our teacher ask the student who called him that name how he felt about the nickname and that student said it was just a joke and wasn’t meant to make my friend feel bad. and how do you think your target feels about the nickname? do you think he likes it? no? then you probably shouldn’t use it, should you?

  • martin yin

    It’s The Washington Redskins…not the Oneida Redskins or Wisconsin Redskins…

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