Kevin Sheehan on how Commanders' trademark loss, could be a big win for Washington football


The U.S. Patent and Trademark Office has denied the Washington Commanders' application for a trademark on the team's name due to the "likelihood of confusion," citing one existing trademark and two pending applications for similar ones.

Trademark attorney Josh Gerben believes the team "will be able to work through these issues," with the Patent Office in the conflict over the "Commander's Classic" trademark and working with the individual who had filled trademarks under the names “Washington Space Commanders” and “Washington Wolf Commanders.”

"But, there was something else that maybe some of you didn't see yesterday," Kevin Sheehan said, pointing out a report from Matthew Paras of the Washington Times.

So on the day that it was revealed the Commanders were denied the trademark on the name – which would be a name killer if they do not end up getting upon review as the team appeals, Sheehan added – Paras turned up that the team did earn the trademark for the name "Washington Football Team."

"So obviously, for those of us that would like to see new ownership seriously consider a rebrand," Sheehan said. "And I'm open to whatever it is if they seriously consider... whatever it is, let's assume that they're smart people that they've done these kinda things before, that it will be a sharper group than the one we've dealt with here for the last quarter century.... but they do now have Washington Football Team trademarked. And if Washington Commanders became – for whatever reason – a little bit more challenging to get trademarked... they could certainly use the excuse that it was just too much of a hassle."

In Sheehan's view, the path isn't closed to Washington Football Team, the temporary name for two seasons, riding again.

"I swear to you, if they said, '[Washington Football Team] is what it's gonna be, we're not considering anything else take it or leave it,' I would take it and run with it," Sheehan said. "As long as it included going back to the old uniforms."

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