'Madden NFL 21' drops Washington Redskins name, logo

Popular video game will instead feature generic Washington NFL team until new name is unveiled

Electronic Arts will remove references to the Washington Redskins name from the upcoming “Madden NFL 21” in a last-minute update prior to the popular video game’s release, the company said Friday.

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The changes will be included as an automatic download upon purchase when the game is released Aug. 25. The name will be removed from all aspects of the “Madden NFL 21” game, including in-game commentary, motion graphics, stadium art, player uniforms, crowd gear and in-stadium signs.

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“We are pleased to see Washington’s decision to change their team name and visual identity,” an Electronic Arts representative said in a statement. “We are quickly working to update Madden NFL 21 to feature a generic Washington team, while we await final word on the updated team name and logo design."

The Washington NFL team retired the name earlier this week after several prominent corporate sponsors, including stadium naming rights partner FedEx, publicly called for a change. Team officials have yet to unveil the franchise’s new name and logo.

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Trademark issues related to the team’s preferred new name are contributing to the delay, according to multiple reports.

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The team intends to maintain its traditional burgundy and gold color scheme, ESPN reported. However, the franchise will no longer use Native American imagery. Critics had long argued that the previous name and logo was racist.

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Aside from the name change, Washington NFL team officials are dealing with intense scrutiny following a Washington Post report in which 15 female former employees accused former executives of sexual harassment and verbal abuse. Team owner Dan Snyder vowed Friday to overhaul the team’s internal culture in response to the allegations.

EA’s “Madden” franchise is among the top-selling video games in history, with sales surpassing 100 million copies. The NFL renewed EA’s exclusive licensing agreement earlier this summer, confirming “Madden” as the only simulation-style football game on the market through at least the 2025 season.

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