Washington Football Team Announces Cheerleaders To Be Replaced With Coed Dance Team

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For the first time in nearly 60 years, the NFL club in Washington will not have just cheerleaders on the sidelines this fall when they take the field.

The team announced on Wednesday that the club’s cheerleaders will be replaced with a coed dance team.

The original cheerleader group was founded in 1962 when the team was known by their nickname the Redskins, which was done away with prior to last season.

The move to dump the cheerleaders is part of the organization’s rebranding effort and not related to a confidential settlement reached with members of the 2008 and 2010 cheerleading teams.

Last month, cheerleaders that were involved in those 2008 and 2010 teams told the AP that “the matter has been resolved.”

There was no word on if or when the settlement was reached and what the amount of that settlement may have been.

The team said on Wednesday they have hired former Laker Girl manager Petra Pope to be an adviser for the unit.

“I’ve been asked to create a more modern entertainment team that is inclusive and diverse,” Pope said in a phone interview with the AP.

“We just want to follow that mode of being more modern and a more modern franchise. Change is difficult, but I do feel that the fans will love what we bring to the table.”

Joey Colby-Begovich, vice president of gameday experience said Monday that Pope will be in charge of forming and naming the new dance team.

Written by Matt Loede

Matt has been a part of the Cleveland Sports landscape working in the media since 1994 when he graduated from broadcasting school. His coverage beats include the Cleveland Indians, Cleveland Browns and Cleveland Cavaliers. He's written three books, and won the "2020 AP Sports Stringer Lifetime Service Award."


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  1. WDT I’m thinking will be their more modern name.
    Alternatively, Matt wrote:
    “The team said on Wednesday they have hired former Laker Girl manager Petra Pope to be an adviser for the unit.”
    How about “The Unit”. Kinda close to “The Squad”…kinda fits in DC.

  2. And the Cheerleaders aren’t happy. From a Richmond Times Dispatch article:

    “After the news broke that the team would be disbanded, the team wrote an open letter asking for reinstatement and the re-hiring of team director Jamilla Keene, who was not retained.

    It read, in part: “While we appreciated the organization’s efforts to reimagine the gameday experience ‘in a way that both honors and modernizes our traditions,’ we are disappointed by how this phase of the rebranding journey was handled – and at our expense.”

  3. Let me guess, they didn’t poll the typical football fan demographic first to make this decision? Nah, you’re gonna sit there and watch it, whether you like it or not, to learn your lesson about what they proclaim is the new reality!

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