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Redskins want to get Antonio Gibson touches but still see a role for Adrian Peterson

Redskins want to get Antonio Gibson touches but still see a role for Adrian Peterson

New Redskins offensive coordinator Scott Turner will take over an offense armed with versatile running backs and pass catchers, but despite all that, veteran ball carrier Adrian Peterson will still play a big part in any Washington success this season. 

"I’ve got a ton of respect for Adrian. I spent three years with him in Minnesota. In 2015, he led the league in rushing," Turner said Wednesday. "I wasn’t calling the plays, I was the quarterback coach, but that’s the offense that we’re going to run to an extent."

While Turner worked together with the Vikings from 2014 to 2016, injury cost Peterson the bulk of two of those seasons. In 2015, however, Peterson excelled, rushing for nearly 1,500  yards and 11 touchdowns. Clearly, that made an impact on Turner. 

"With Adrian and his skillset, when he’s rolling, there’s a role for that type of back."

It's no secret that Turner's offense last year in Carolina centered around passing the ball to running back Christian McCaffrey, but he was arguably the best offensive player in the league. The offense should center around getting him the ball.

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For the Redskins, the running back room looked crowded before the NFL Draft in April, and then with their third-round pick, Washington selected another ballcarrier in Memphis' Antonio Gibson. That decision allowed some people to wonder about the future in D.C. for Peterson, but it doesn't seem like Turner sees things that way. 

"He’s capable of catching check downs and those types of things," Turner said of Peterson. "He’s great when you have him in there for play-action passes, when you’re trying to throw the ball down the field. I’m not concerned with that."

The new Redskins coaching staff was in charge when the club elected to pick up Peterson's team option worth nearly $3 million. Ron Rivera, and in turn Turner, brought Peterson back on purpose. 

At the same time, the Redskins drafted Gibson and signed J.D. McKissic and Peyton Barber on purpose too.

"That’s the beauty of offensive football is you get to ask the players to do what you want to do," Turner said. "If someone’s not good at something, regardless of who it is, they don’t have to do it."

Turner also brought up the success Gibson had lined up as a wide receiver in college, so expect to see some of that this fall. 

The simple message when it came to Peterson from the Redskins new offensive boss: We like him. He's got a role. He's a part of the plan. In politics, like sports, the old saying is to follow the money. Peterson had a role when the team picked up his option back in March. Now it just sounds that much more official. 

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Report: Redskins minority owners unsuccessfully tried to convince Dan Snyder to sell majority stake of franchise

Report: Redskins minority owners unsuccessfully tried to convince Dan Snyder to sell majority stake of franchise

Redskins minority owner and FedEx CEO Fred Smith, along with Washington's other two minority owners -- Robert Rothman and Dwight Schar -- want out of their stake in the franchise after unsuccessfully trying to convince majority owner Dan Snyder to sell his majority portion to them, according to Washington Times' columnist Thom Loverro.

This report comes just days after the Washington Post reported that Smith, Rothman, and Schar wanted out altogether, citing that the trio is "not happy being a partner" with Snyder. The three of them make up approximately 40 percent of the Redskins' ownership group.

This past Thursday, FedEx became one of the first major corporate sponsors of the Redskins to publicly place pressure on the franchise to change its name. Other companies such as Nike, which removed all Redskins' products from its website, along with Bank of America and PepsiCo followed shortly after.

FedEx's statement came after a report from AdWeek surfaced that a number of major investment firms told the company they would pull capital if the team's major sponsors didn't publicly pressure the franchise to change its name. 

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In response, the Redskins released a statement on Friday that the team is undergoing a "thorough review" of the team's name. Washington's new moniker will not have any Native American imagery, according to ESPN's Adam Schefter, but the team will reportedly keep its beloved burgundy and gold color scheme.

Both NBC Sports Washington and multiple other outlets have reported that the team will likely not play another game with 'Redskins' as its name.

RELATED: GET TO KNOW REDSKINS' MINORITY OWNER FRED SMITH

However, it could take some time for the franchise to finalize the process of changing the name, meaning the club could play the 2020 season without a team name.

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Why Lorenzo Alexander didn't speak up on Redskins' name when he was playing

Why Lorenzo Alexander didn't speak up on Redskins' name when he was playing

For the first six seasons of his NFL career, Lorenzo Alexander sported the Burgundy and Gold every Sunday. Alexander was one of the Redskins' best special teamers during his tenure in Washington and even earned a Pro Bowl nod in his final season with the team.

However, throughout his six seasons with Washington, the defensive lineman-linebacker hybrid never raised concern about the Redskins' name. Now, that has changed.

In an interview with 106.7 The Fan's Grant Paulsen and Danny Rouhier on Wednesday, Alexander explained his current stance on the team's name, as well as why he never chose to speak up on the issue when he was a player for Washington.

"What I'm about to say, obviously the name should be changed," Alexander said. "But I can be seen as hypocritical because I played for the team and never really said much of it."

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Over the past week, the Redskins have been publicly pressured by some of its largest corporate sponsors to change the name. In response, the team announced on Friday it was undergoing a review of the name, and a change appears to be on the horizon. 

For Alexander, it took time to be away from the team to truly understand the meaning behind the name Redskins. Now, more than ever before, he understands why the name may need to be a thing of the past.

"I think once you kind of step away from it and kind of analyze what the word means and the progression of it – because it wasn't always a derogatory name, but at some point, it got attached to killing of Native Americans," Alexander said. "There's obviously a group in the Native American community that feels that it is derogatory, and they've always shown up and always protested, even while I was there, as far as getting the name changed."

With the social justice movement and fight for racial equality in America in full effect following the killing of George Floyd, Alexander believes that it would have been "hypocritical" for him not to advocate for a name change.

"I think we can no longer kind of stand behind ignorance or the fact that it doesn't really impact me," Alexander said. "So as a black man in the community, [it] would be very hypocritical for me to say, 'No, I love the name! It doesn't impact me!' when my community is kind of in an uproar right now speaking out on the same thing to the white community as far as some of the things that we see and how our lives are impacted."

RELATED: NEW REDSKINS NAME WILL NOT CONTAIN NATIVE AMERICAN IMAGERY, PER REPORT

During the interview, Alexander repeatedly emphasized how important it is for people with a powerful voice to speak up about societal issues, as that is one of the best ways to create a meaningful change.

Alexander commended FedEx being the first Redskins' sponsor to publicly call for a change, even with the company having such a lucrative partnership with the team. Additionally, Alexander mentioned that he doesn't think the movement to change the name would be so strong had the company not publicly raised concern about it.

"Some are bigger than others and that's why it takes all of us to create change because if FedEx didn't jump on board, this probably wouldn't have got done," Alexander said. "And so by them including themselves in the conversation and for change, it allowed for change to occur, and that's why I think everybody's responsible for the direction of our country as we move forward."

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