After more than 80 years of Redskins football the Washington football club announced Monday that the team will retire the nickname. It's a massive story. It's a global story.
But as the name story dominates the conversation around the Washington club, there are still other huge stories floating around the organization, all of which will make a more significant impact to the actual football field.
How about a refresher?
- Ownership changes - Forty percent of the Washington team is available for sale. That's a huge, huge story, and in any other year it would be the biggest story in the NFL. Who will buy that portion of the team? Why do the current minority owners want out? What's the valuation of the team? It's not that uncommon for limited partners to sell; those types of transactions happen. But this feels different and there have been reports of other issues at play. Again, this is a HUGE story.
- Executives fired - Washington fired two pro personnel executives over the weekend, and there's been almost no discussion about the moves and no reason given for the moves. Front office changes usually happen one of two times: after the season or after the draft. Not in early July a few weeks before training camp. If this happened to the Eagles or the Browns or the Seahawks, it would be a major story.
- Franchise tag - It's understandable if Washington's fans never want to hear about the franchise tag again after the Kirk Cousins saga/fiasco that encapsulated the franchise for multiple seasons. But, here we are. Brandon Scherff, the 2015 first-round pick, will play the 2020 year on the tag after neither side got close to a long-term deal. With the COVID-19 pandemic taking over the world and NFL revenues for 2020 in question, it makes sense the team didn't offer a mega contract to the three-time Pro Bowl right guard. There could be more here, however, as Scherff has dealt with injuries in each of the past three seasons and there is some debate around the league how much interior linemen should make. The deadline for a new deal for Scherff expires on Wednesday, and don't expect anything to happen. In a normal offseason, this would be the team's biggest story, but in 2020, this is barely a blip on the radar.
- That wide receiver that got arrested - Remember Cody Lattimer, the receiver the Redskins signed as a free agent to provide depth and maybe compete to start opposite Terry McLaurin? Remember he was arrested in May on multiple charges that included assault and weapons? Amid the name change and the ownership changes, the Lattimer story has gone completely forgotten. At some point, it will need to be addressed.
- A million injuries - This might seem hard to remember but there was a time when Redskins reporters wrote stories about football. It used to happen. Washington has a number of players coming back from injuries, and some are potential stars. How is Derrius Guice's repaired knee? Can Reuben Foster play this year? Bryce Love? Alex Smith? If the Redskins actually get to training camp, those questions will need answers.
- So much more - The Redskins have a new head coach, new offensive and defensive coordinators and an almost entirely new coaching staff. Normally, that's the story of the offseason. In 2020, it seems like Ron Rivera has been in charge of Washington for five years. In fact, it's been about six months.
- Don't forget - There's a global pandemic and who knows if football actually gets played.
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