Another of the Washington NFL team’s most significant financial partners has apparently made a move against the team’s name.
Nike, the NFL’s primary jersey and apparel supplier, appears to have wiped the team’s entire collection of merchandise from its website. Searches for “Redskins” yield nothing. Searches for “Washington NFL” have similar results. Meanwhile, “Cowboys” and any other team name lead to your usual bunch of jerseys and shirts.
Mike Jones of USA Today noted the absence Thursday night.
— Mike Jones (@ByMikeJones) July 3, 2020
It’s worth noting the team’s own online pro shop does not appear to have been affected, just Nike’s own store. Still, it’s a move with clear implications when you consider the context.
FedEx, other investors have called for name change
Just one day earlier, a collection of 87 investors and shareholders worth over $600 billion reportedly signed a letter urging Nike, FedEx and PepsiCo to end their relationship with the franchise until it changes its name, according to Adweek.
FedEx, which owns the name rights to Washington’s FedEx Field, was the first to act Thursday when it revealed it had told the team it wants a name change. Now, Nike appears to be applying its own kind of pressure, though the apparel titan has not made any sort of official communication so far. Those two companies alone represent a massive amount of money flowing to the team.
A number of District of Columbia officials have also signaled that the team’s potential return to the district would be contingent on a name change.
Pressure for Snyder to change the name has been at an all-time high in the weeks following the killing of George Floyd in police custody. Snyder has stood firm for years that he will never change his racial slur of a team name, even after calls from Native Americans, the White House and the United Nations Human Rights Council.
We’ll see if the almighty dollar holds more sway.
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