The Washington Football Team plans to reveal its new name on Feb. 2—but a leak may have overshadowed the Groundhog Day announcement. Sporting News reports that a domain name transfer suggests the team formerly known as the Washington Redskins might be soon be called the Washington Commanders. A Twitter user spotted that the Commanders.com domain was transferred Wednesday to MarkMonitor, the company used by the NFL and most of its teams. There did not appear to be any similar transfers with domain names that could be used by other contenders, including Armada, Presidents, Red Hogs, Defenders, and Brigade, and the team is already handling the domain for another option: keeping Washington Football Team.
Dave Evanson of domain name broker Sedo.com says Commanders.com was sold for $20,000 last summer. Tech expert Shawn DuBravac tells Fox 5 DC that the involvement of MarkMonitor suggests the name is in the hands of a large corporation. "The fact that MarkMonitor has large corporate clients, it’s most likely a large organization that’s using this. It isn’t somebody who’s just speculating in the name, but likely a corporation that plans to use it. It also happens that Mark Monitor has a deep relationship with the NFL and many of the teams."
Earlier this month, team president Jason Wright confirmed that the possible names Wolves or RedWolves, both popular with fans, would not be used because of trademarks held elsewhere, the AP reports. Fans looking for clues suspected the date of the announcement suggested Red Hogs was most likely, reports CBS. Others noted that the domain WashingtonAdmirals.com redirected users to the Washington team's website, although it now sends users to the page for the NFL's "Crucial Catch" cancer-fighting initiative. (Read more Washington Football Team stories.)