If you’ve been paying attention to the Redskins this offseason, you might have heard about a guy named Albert Haynesworth.
You might have heard that he didn’t show up for voluntary workouts during the offseason because he had a problem with playing in a 3-4 defense.
You might have heard about the big guy not being able to complete a workout that ESPN’s Mike Golic completed, a former defensive tackle who last appeared in a game in 1993.
You might have heard that after a preseason game in which he did not start, that as a result of his not starting, he told reporters he would not be coming to voluntary workouts next year either.
Have you heard that he’s guaranteed $41 million? He could almost feed Latrell Sprewell’s family three times with that kind of money.
The Redskins would love nothing more than to stop hearing about him soon.
The most mindboggling aspect of his behavior is that he isn’t upset over his contract, obviously. He’s upset that his style of play does not fit the new Redskins’ 3-4 defense. Usually in a 3-4, the defensive tackle is about 400 lbs. and his job is to take up blockers in order for the defensive ends and linebackers to make plays.
This offseason, numerous players such as Jets cornerback Darrelle Revis and Chargers wide receiver Vincent Jackson missed some, and in Jackson’s case, all of training camp because they were unhappy with their contracts. In the past we saw T.O. throw a hissy fit and start doing situps in his driveway because he didn’t feel he was getting the money he deserved from the Eagles. But this is different. Haynesworth is throwing a tantrum because there’s a chance his statistics will be negatively affected.
Haynesworth’s behavior would be at least tolerable to the Redskins if he had even a somewhat productive season in 2009. If he had put up the kind of numbers that won him the Defensive Player of the Year award for the Titans in 2008, the Redskins wouldn’t care if he showed up for offseason workouts or even training camp for that matter. Just look at Brett Favre. Instead, in 2009 the Redskins got an out of shape, high priced defensive tackle who spent more time at the oxygen tank on the sideline then dominating opposing offensive linemen.
This wasn’t a surprising turn of events. What was Haynesworth’s motivation to be a dominant player? He’s already guaranteed tens of millions of dollars, so money isn’t a motivation. And his motivation certainly is not to help the team win the Super Bowl, because players who wish to win the Super Bowl do not sign with the Washington Redskins. They’re the football equivalent of the L.A. Clippers.
At this point it’s clear that he’s not going to change. The Redskins would be better off to part ways with him any way they can. They need to just admit they made a mistake, eat the contract and move on. Not just because he’s a prima donna. The Redskins should get rid of him because he doesn’t help the team.
An argument could be made to keep a talented player like Brandon Marshall or Chad Ochocinco on your team because with all the problems they create with their mouths, they produce. Albert Haynesworth is productive on a part-time basis and yet he talks like he’s still the best defensive player in the NFL.
The Redskins are far from being a Super Bowl contender. Yet, as with every team, reaching the big game is the ultimate goal. That goal cannot and will not be reached with Albert Haynesworth on the team. If someone calls Redskins General Manager Bruce Allen and offers him a backup kicker for Haynesworth, he needs to make that deal.