Washington Redskins cornerback DeAngelo Hall on Friday attempted to provide some clarity to his statement on the teamâs nickname and whether it should be changed.
Hall on Thursday made an appearance on Fox Sports show âKeepinâ it Real with Mike Hill.â During a series of questions, Hill asked Hall about the name. The exchange went as follows:
Hill: âSkins: name change or not? Redskins.â
Hall: âI think eventually they will change it. Um–.â
Hill: âShould they change it?â
Hall: âSee, Iâm–.â
Hill: âKeep it real.â
Hall: âGosh, Mike. I–.â
Hill: âBut they should.â
Hall: âThey probably should. But, they wonât. They wonât for a while, at least.â
The interview then moved onto another topic.
Hall said Friday morning that a number of people, some within the Redskins organization, contacted him after the TV appearance, asking him about his remarks. Several friends e-mailed him an article about what he said. The cornerback said that he was caught off guard both by the question and the reaction, and tried to explain his intended message.
âI was definitely surprised and thought I answered it as best I could,â said Hall, who will be a free agent this offseason. âI guess, going back reading it, I didnât see the exact extent of it and if I said that through the course of the interview.â
Hall and his teammates had avoided giving an opinion on the name topic, always deferring to the organization’s higher-ups whenever asked.
On Friday he acknowledged the sensitive nature of the topic, and said that he understands both sides.
âBack in the day, people dropped the N-word just like they were saying, âHey, bro.â Now, it means a whole heck of a lot for us,â Hall said. âIs this the same thing? Iâm not Native American. I have some in my background â my granddad was part â but I canât claim to understand where theyâre coming from or their viewpoint, so for me to say whatâs right or wrong or what should be changed is out of my pay grade.
âThat decision ultimately â you know me, all teammates and I have stayed away from this topic. Itâs one where you really canât be right. Somebodyâs going to view it one way, and somebodyâs going to view it the other way. So, itâs not my team, as far as owning the team to make a change. That burden falls on Dan Snyder and the rest of the ownership committee. But, to just totally X-out the past of what the Redskins mean? I grew up a huge Redskins fan. Being from Virginia Beach, thatâs all I knew: Darrell Green, Dexter Manley and all those other guys, Joe Theismann. I donât want to take anything away from those guys or the history of what they mean to myself and the National Football League.â
Hall continued, âBut, I wasnât saying, âHey, letâs go change the name.â I just mean that at some point, if itâs upsetting people to the extent that theyâre in the majority, then, being a smart businessman, itâll probably get addressed through the proper channels. But the last time I heard, I think the last poll I seen, it was 90 percent in favor of keeping the name, including the Native American community. So, for me to comment on something that I have no real knowledge of, or doesnât really affect me as far as the negativity of the phrase, Iâd be doing myself, and Native Americans all over, an injustice to really speak on it.
âBut that wasnât my intent of it,â he said. âI was just trying to say that, âHey, things 50 years ago are not what they are now. Will it change? Who knows.â But, I love the name. I love the name. I have a Redskins head tat on my leg. Me growing up a Redskins fan and having an opportunity to play for them was the best honor I could have. And this ainât about me wanting to come back. If I come back, I come back. If I donât, I donât. This has nothing to do with that at all. This is just trying to get it straight and really saying what I meant to say.â