The Washington PostDemocracy Dies in Darkness

Gibbs: ‘It would be wrong to change the team’s name’

(Doug Mills/AP)
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I’m going to switch things up, and put my apology for posting this at the bottom. If you’re interested in that, scroll down.

Joe Gibbs was roasted last Thursday in Landsdowne, as I’ve mentioned previously, and there were a few reporters and a few team legends in the building. One of the reporters — WNEW’s Cameron Thompson — asked several of the legends for their thoughts on the team’s name, and Gibbs offered the firmest defense.

“One of the best things that I saw on that [issue] was that Rick Reilly article that came out about two or three weeks ago,” the ex-coach said. “I think that says it probably the best. For me, from the time I grew up as a young kid running around the hills of North Carolina, the only football team we could get was the Redskins. So from that time on, everything I’ve known or been a part of has been Redskins. I never, ever thought of it as anything negative; it’s all been a positive. I think that’s what I reflect on: I reflect on the song, the games and everybody being loyal Redskins people.”

“So, in your your mind, it would be wrong to change the team name?” Thompson asked.

“It would be wrong to change the team’s name,” Gibbs agreed.

(Here’s my apology: I’m pretty sure I’ve still never asked anybody about this topic. I was in a room with all these legends, and it never occurred to me I should ask them about this topic. The Post — and, specifically, the Bog — has published an immense number of stories on this topic, despite evidence that my most loyal readers are filled with ennui and despair each time a new one appears. But once I started last winter — not having any idea that this would become A Thing — it’s kind of hard to know how to stop. We’re going to publish Christine Brennan’s thoughts on “Redskins,” but not those of Joe Gibbs? Does that makes sense? It’s a trap, linguistic quicksand, and there’s no end in sight. Good news: it’s still more interesting than RGIIIKnee debates. To me, at least.)