The 73-year-old NASCAR team owner and Pro Football Hall of Famer spoke about the controversy surrounding the Redskins' name before the start of the Quaker State 400 on Saturday at Kentucky Speedway in Sparta, Ky. He views the name differently that those who consider it offensive or racist.
Redskins owner Daniel Snyder faces increasing pressure from some groups to change the nickname.
"It was always prideful. It was courage involved," Gibbs said, according to FoxSports.com. "We have a song, 'Hail To The Redskins.' And so everything -- everything -- about that name has been positive for me in my past."
Gibbs coached the Redskins for 16 seasons, posting a 154-94 record in two stints, and said he watched the team since his youth.
"I grew up in North Carolina. The only team we could get on TV in the late '40s was the Redskins," Gibbs said. "I pulled for them my whole life. For the whole time I was there ... never once did I hear anybody ever say anything negative about the name 'Redskins.'"
Gibbs' Sprint Cup team includes drivers Denny Hamlin, Kyle Busch and Matt Kenseth.