WASHINGTON - As Redskins fans look to the future, there is a growing war of words whether the team will return to the nation’s capital to play their games.
D.C. Mayor Muriel Bowser laid out her case for the team making a comeback to its old home at the RFK Stadium site. But the top official in Prince's Georges County in Maryland where the team plays currently said not so fast D.C.
There has been a lot of talk of controversy over how the team’s name would or would not affect its desire to build a new stadium.
The Redskins have an agreement to play at FedEx Field for another eleven years until 2027. To that end, the team recently hired a Danish architecture firm to start work on designing a new stadium.
While we know the Redskins have been speaking to local officials in D.C., Maryland and Virginia, what we don't know is where a new stadium would wind up.
On Monday, Bowser said bluntly that "Washington should play in Washington." While the mayor pointedly did not use the Redskins name, she did outline her vision to have the team build a brand new stadium where their old home, RFK Stadium, is currently located.
"We are building a soccer stadium. Our soccer team is going to be playing there in 2018, and after that, we are going to have an empty RFK Stadium,” said Mayor Bowser. “So my charge as mayor is to make sure that we have a plan for RFK by that time."
None of this talk though is going over well with leaders where the Redskins currently call home. Prince George’s County Executive Rushern Baker dismissed Bowser’s statement as "One of those things you hear mayors say."
The Redskins have played in Landover, Maryland since 1997. Baker wants the new stadium in Largo. He said the area around Largo Town Center boasts highways, modern developments and multiple Metro lines that a new stadium would need and these are all things D.C. does not have to offer.
"When I have talked to ownership and Dan Snyder of the Redskins, they want a downtown feel,” said Baker. “They want an urban feel around the stadium so people can not only just come during the game time, but stay afterwards, come early, and that is what they are going to see in Largo.”
Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe has made no secret that he wants the Redskins move to Virginia where the team already practices and holds training camp. The governor's spokesperson told FOX 5 on Monday there was no update on Virginia's efforts.
Money is a big factor in the desire to build a new stadium. Just on Sunday, Prince George’s County made $750,000 in entertainment taxes alone on FedEx Field tickets.