In the wake of the killing of George Floyd and the subsequent protests over racial injustice throughout the United States and around the world, Barry Svrluga of the Washington Post wrote that the Washington Redskins should change the team's name, either willingly or per the direction of the NFL.
National Congress of American Indians President Fawn Sharp went one step further and requested that players threaten a boycott via a piece published by Washingtonian on Friday:
The racial slur can no longer be removed by the complicit, indifferent, tone-deaf ownership of the franchise, because the stain they have fixed onto their own name and enterprises is now permanent.
It is an insult that can no longer be retracted, a sin that can no longer be erased.
Since it’s too late to give the team name up, it’s time for it to be taken. It’s time for the players to rip down that name like it was a statue of a Confederate general in their locker room.
I am calling for members of the NFL franchise in Washington, DC, to rise to the occasion and become heroes. All I ask is that you state the unequivocal moral truth: just as you would never play for the Washington [insert any other racial slur], you will no longer play for any team branded with a racial slur against Native Americans.
As long as that team name stands, players of conscience should sit at home rather than wear the NFL equivalent of the Confederate flag.
Following Floyd's death, NASCAR banned Confederate flags from all events after Bubba Wallace, the only full-time black driver on the Cup Series, publicly demanded that the organization take such a serious stance against racist symbols.
Elsewhere, Clemson removed John C. Calhoun's name from its honors college because of his racist and pro-slavery beliefs. The University of Florida eliminated the "Gator Bait" chant from band performances because of its links to racist imagery.
Redskins owner Dan Snyder has repeatedly said he'll never change the name of his franchise.