2020-07-03T18:00:06+00:00)

Washington Redskins owner opens door to possible name change

(Reuters) - Under mounting pressure from sponsors and Native American rights groups, Washington Redskins owner Dan Snyder said on Friday he would consider changing the team’s name.

Snyder, who has previously stated he would not change the name, softened his stance a day after FedEx Corp, which owns the naming rights to the team’s Landover, Maryland, stadium, called for the NFL club to be rebranded.

The NFL team said in a statement that in light of recent events around the country and feedback from the community that it will undergo a thorough review of the name.

“This process allows the team to take into account not only the proud tradition and history of the franchise but also input from our alumni, the organization, sponsors, the National Football League and the local community it is proud to represent on and off the field,” Snyder said in a statement.

Critics have ramped up pressure on the team to change its name, which is widely seen as a racial slur against Native Americans, after the death of George Floyd in police custody set off widespread protests for racial justice across the United States.

“This issue is of personal importance to me and I look forward to working closely with Dan Snyder to make sure we continue the mission of honoring and supporting Native Americans and our Military,” said Redskins head coach Ron Rivera in a statement alongside Snyder’s.

Reporting by Steve Keating in Toronto; Editing by Matthew Lewis

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