Details On Haynesworth Meetings Finally Emerge

Jason Reid has just published some of the ancient but fascinating details surrounding meetings that took place between Albert Haynesworth, Jim Haslett, and Mike Shanahan at the beginning of the offseason, about Haynesworth decision to stay away from OTAs, and his desire not to play nose tackle in a 3-4 defensive scheme — and then of course all the uncomfortable negativity that ensued between them.

Just so we’re uber-clear what happened that caused this train wreck:

Their only meeting was a disaster. Washington Redskins defensive coordinator Jim Haslett acknowledges he did not enjoy speaking with defensive lineman Albert Haynesworth in January and people close to the Pro Bowler say he felt similarly about Haslett.

Obviously, Haslett was among many at Redskins Park displeased about Haynesworth’s decision to stay away from Ashburn for all but one day of Coach Mike Shanahan’s first offseason program, and publicly request a trade after receiving a $21 million check from the team.

Haslett, who has complete control of the defense, was willing to accommodate Haynesworth to a certain extent, team sources said. He planned for Haynesworth to line up primarily at defensive end, on the guard’s outside shoulder, the position Haynesworth has played since college.

But Shanahan, still angry over Haynesworth’s defiance, often has emphasized that Haynesworth will be Washington’s “starting nose tackle,” a position Haynesworth is not interested in playing.

Shanahan hired Haslett to convert Washington’s defense from its methodical 4-3 of the past two seasons to an aggressive, 3-4 attack capable of producing a large number of turnovers. The change is a major part of Shanahan’s blueprint to restore the Redskins to prominence, and Haslett, who directed the Pittsburgh Steelers’ strong 3-4 for three seasons in the late 1990s, knows better than most what it takes to make the scheme work.

Read the full story here >>


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