OK, So Maybe the Washington Football Team Is a Bigger Mess Than We Realized

AUGUST 29: Washington Redskins owner Dan Snyder stands on the field before a preseason game between the Baltimore Ravens and Redskins at FedExField on August 29, 2019, in Landover, Maryland.
AUGUST 29: Washington Redskins owner Dan Snyder stands on the field before a preseason game between the Baltimore Ravens and Redskins at FedExField on August 29, 2019, in Landover, Maryland.
Photo: Patrick McDermott (Getty Images)

OK, we all knew Dan Snyder was a terrible boss, but holy shit.

As the team formerly known as the Washington Racial Slurs continues to endure the worst off-season ever, the team now faces even more accusations of sexual harassment following 15 former employees accusing the team of sexual misconduct and verbal abuse in July.

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From USA Today:

Beginning Thursday and throughout the weekend, ESPN will air interviews with four female former employees of the Washington Football Team who allege a corrosive culture within the organization detailed in a pair of Washington Post reports this summer.

The women, who spoke with Jeremy Schapp of “Outside The Lines,” say they were harassed and subjected to misogynistic and sexist behavior — claims well-documented by the Post.

Parts of their conversations with Schapp were aired Thursday on the “ESPN Daily” podcast.

“It’s hard, working there,” said Rachel Engleson, a former director in the marketing and client services department. “You just know that depending on the certain way you dress there’s gonna be comments made about what you’re wearing, how you look. When you walk through the office, you’re just kind of waiting for the comments to come from male colleagues. I would get inappropriate comments about my hair, my outfit, how I looked, in public, in front of my own clients.

“In a way, it became a running joke and a rite of passage. If it didn’t happen to you, then maybe you were only there for a week.”

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Another woman, Alicia Klein, detailed just how dangerous and pervasive Washington’s misogynistic culture was.

“I was followed to my car by a player who I kept saying, ‘I don’t want to go out with you. Please just leave me alone,’” she said. “And he followed me to my car.

“How am I supposed to feel safe and do my job if I know that somebody is going to be waiting for me in the parking lot? And I have my colleagues telling me, ‘Oh, just wait. Couple days they’ll get tired and then they’ll chase someone else.’”

As we reported here at The Root in July, team execs Alex Santons, Larry Michael and Richard Mann II were all dismissed after the Washington Post dropped a bombshell report in which 15 former employees and two journalists accused the team of sexual harassment and being verbally abusive.

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In response to these allegations, the team hired a law firm to conduct an investigation, but the NFL assumed control of the investigation after the Post dropped another report alleging that these creepy-ass Washington staffers were creating videos of partially nude cheerleaders patched together from swimsuit calendar shoot footage from 2008.

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“We strongly condemn the unprofessional, disturbing and abhorrent behavior and workplace environment alleged in the report which is entirely inconsistent with our standards and has no place in the NFL,” NFL commissioner Roger Goodell said in response to the Post’s second report.

This, of course, follows a summer in which former running back Derrius Guice was released after he was charged with strangulation and assault and battery of his girlfriend, head coach Ron Rivera was diagnosed with lymph node cancer and the team was forced to abandon its racist-ass name after 87 years.

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If this scandal proves itself to be insurmountable, Snyder could join former Carolina Panthers owner Jerry Richardson, who was forced to sell his team in 2018 after he was exposed as a creep and—wait for it—a racist.

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You can watch a clip of former Washington employees detailing the sexual harassment they suffered below.

Menace to supremacy. Founder of Extraordinary Ideas and co-host and producer of The Extraordinary Negroes podcast. Impatiently waiting for ya'll to stop putting sugar in grits.

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DISCUSSION

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As a DC-area local, I’m cautiously optimistic the NFL could push him out. This work environment sounds heinous, and the NFL could be predisposed to want Snyder gone, because he’s been running the team into the ground for years. Except for the hardcore crazy diehards, Snyder lost the local fanbase a long time ago. Last season couldn’t sell out games even after removing tens of thousands of seats from the stadium (the green/orange/purple structure in the upper deck is covering where those seats used to be) and fans of opposing teams regularly outnumber home fans.