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The Washington Commanders are about to have a new owner and Josh Harris' first order of business could be finding another new nickname for his NFL franchise. The United States Patent and Trademark Office recently denied the team's application to trademark the 'Washington Commanders' moniker, which was adopted back in February of 2022 after an exhaustive search that began back in 2020. 

The USPTO denied it over two main factors. The first was a conflicting trademark for the "Commanders' Classic," which is an annual football game played between Air Force and Army. The other was due to a D.C. area man who previously filed trademarks trying to guess the team's new name. 

While this does throw a wrench into the team's immediate plans to protect their new brand, a Commanders spokesperson relayed confidence that they would be able to eventually get the nickname trademarked in a statement to Pro Football Talk. With that in mind, it seems more likely than not that the "Washington Commanders" are here to stay. However, another wrench could always be thrown into the legal mix or Harris could simply decide to name his team something else, which has us back to where we were a few years ago trying to come up with a new name for the Washington franchise. 

Throughout the initial name-changing process, a handful of finalists were sprinkled out, which we'll revisit and rank as the best alternative option if the Commanders is ultimately unable to be trademarked. 

8. Defenders

It's fine. But anyone could use this. It's like the default output of a random team-name generator in "Madden." Ron Rivera might like it, considering the way his team is built, but that'd be an awfully short-sighted re-brand.

7. Redhawks

It's not bad and carries a respectful resemblance to the franchise's name of old, but Miami University (Ohio) made this switch first. Plus, Washington has already indicated it wants to move away from its original Native American imagery.

6. Brigade

The singular name is unique, and "Washington Brigade" flows pretty nicely. An altogether solid choice, if they're leaning in the nation's capital/American patriotism route.

5. Sentinels

This isn't nearly as threatening/formidable a term as "Brigade" or even "Commanders," but it's got a respectability to it -- a more unique version of something like "Warriors." It's also similar to the 19th and early 20th-century Washington Senators baseball team.

4. Admirals

This would fit in nicely with the team's new uniforms, which now include stars. And it obviously fits the military theme. It's not necessarily creative, but it works, essentially deeming its players a bunch of high-ranking soldiers.

3. Presidents

This one comes with inevitable baggage, considering they'd constantly be associated with the sitting U.S. president. But "Washington Presidents" just sounds right, too. If they want to embrace their D.C. location, you can't do much better.

2. Armada

Armada means a fleet of warships or vehicles. And it sounds even cooler than "Brigade." This one's all about the aesthetic. "Introducing, in 2022, the Washington Armada!"

1. Red Hogs

"Hogs" has long been a nickname in and around the franchise, so it'd only be fitting to see a promotion here. Cutting "Red" from the name would actually make it better, but still, this is clearly the best way to pay tribute to team history while embarking with a new identity.