LOUDOUN COUNTY, Va., April 23, 2021 – The Washington Football Team today announced it has received nearly 40,000 name submissions from the fanbase by mail to the team headquarters on Joe Gibbs Drive and through WashingtonJourney.com. After rolling out the immersive fan engagement hub in August 2020, Washington received 17,251 submissions – including everything from team names to creative ideas for new logos and uniform designs – over seven months. On March 23rd, a "last call" was issued with a deadline of April 6th at 11:59 p.m. ET, drawing an additional 22,533 comprehensive submissions over a two-week period.
"On behalf of the Washington Football Team organization and all involved in this process, thank you to the thousands of people who took the time to share their thoughts with us," said Julie Jensen, Senior Vice President, External Engagement & Communications for the Washington Football Team. "This journey really showed that we've got not only some of the most passionate fans in the league, but also some of the most creative."
Ideas were submitted by fans of all ages from the DMV and around the world as inspiration for the organization's rebrand efforts. Notable geographical breakouts include:
Submissions from 61 countries across 6 continents:
• 560 were from Canada, 104 from Mexico, 47 from Brazil, and 7 from Chile
• 720 submissions came from Europe, with 378 coming from Great Britain, 152 from Germany, 23 from France, 22 from Italy, 20 from Ireland, and 14 from Spain
• 111 "traveled" approximately 10,000 miles from Oceania
Representation from all 50 states and every U.S. territory, with the DMV making up a third of total submissions:
• 1,157 from Washington, D.C.
• 5,564 from Maryland
• 6,552 from Virginia
The young fanbase showed its creativity with names like the Cannons, the Thrushers, Red-Monster-Truck-Jam, and an important safety reminder – the "Washington Wash Your Hands." The team also received input from loyal Burgundy & Gold fans who shared stories, with highlights including:
• a ball boy from the 1972 NFC Championship Game – a 26-3 victory over the Dallas Cowboys
• a former RFK Stadium pretzel vendor whose grandfather played the saxophone in the team band
• the son of a former Washington player, who played for Washington during the 1943, '44 and '46 seasons, missing the 1945 season while fighting in World War II
• a fan whose family has had season tickets since 1937 and who attended their first game in 1955 at Griffith Stadium
• a fourth-generation fan of the team, who worked on their submission together with the fifth-generation fan they're raising
One 85-year-old Washington Football Team fan summed up the opportunity for the team within his submission noting that, "A new name for the team must convey both historical connection and a recommitment to the aspirations and goals for the organization – in the business of professional football and as a respected leader in 21st-century society and culture."
With submissions closed, Washington has entered the "insights" phase, reviewing fan feedback, considering ideas, issuing surveys, and holding additional focus group discussions. As the rebranding process evolves, www.washingtonjourney.com will continue to be updated with new content to take visitors behind the scenes. Earlier this month, Washington announced FAN – the Fan Ambassador Network, with nominations being taken at www.washingtonfootball.com/FAN. Stay up to date on all Washington Football Team news via the team's website, YouTube, Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.