Five worst moments of the Haynesworth era
Well, this is ending well, isn't it? As with many of the Redskins' biggest free agent signings in recent years, it's hard to argue that the high point of the Haynesworth era came at any point after his introductory press conference. The low point? I've got low points.
Best to worst, I guess.
5. The Christmas Day Dismissal
On what was supposed to be a quiet and peaceful day toward the tail end of a miserable and terrible and awful season, Jim Zorn sent Haynesworth home from a Christmas morning practice for disciplinary reasons. The incident came a few days after he publicly questioned the team's leadership and scheme during a blowout loss in which he threw punches at Brandon Jacobs.
Veteran players walking into the locker room after that practice said things like "this should have been done a long time ago," more or less. And then Haynesworth went off to Jason Reid.
"If they keep this system the way it is, then they would label Albert Haynesworth a bust who didn't live up to the contract," Haynesworth said. "Everybody would say he just took the money and ran off. And I'm still playing as hard as I possibly can. But you can only do so much within the system that's put around you. And I'm not talking about the players. The players have been great. I couldn't ask for any better guys. I'm talking about the system."
4. The Carting
The signature image of the 2009 Redskins season was of Haynesworth on the ground, Haynesworth on one knee, Haynesworth on a cart, leaving a game with mechanized assistance only to return later. Highlight shows showed these clips over and over, analysts cackled over them, and blogs ran rampant with them. Damn blogs.
3. The Lying Down Play
The 2010 season officially began to unravel during the loss in Detroit, but the worst moment to date was the Monday Night Meltdown. And the signature moment of that game -- aside from the pre-game scuffle and first-play touchdown -- was of Haynesworth on the ground, not getting up, allowing one final block on Andre Carter to give Michael Vick one final second to throw his eleventy billionth touchdown of the game.
2. The Offseason Standoff
From the beginning of offseason workouts until the beginning of Redskins training camp this season -- a span of about 140 days -- the Redskins Insider ran 51 items with "Haynesworth" in the headline. The D.C. Sports Bog checked in with 43 such items. In case you forgot, here were some of the headlines:
* Vinny Cerrato calls Haynesworth issue "a huge distraction"
* Riggins calls Haynesworth "an infection"
* Mark Schlereth rips Haynesworth's heart
* Darnell Dockett mocks Haynesworth, again
* Stephen A. Smith wants Haynesworth crucified
* Rocky McIntosh is tired of Haynesworth's shenanigans
* Marco Coleman takes his shots at Haynesworth
* Michael Strahan whacks the Haynesworth pinata
* Andre Carter to Haynesworth: "Leave the BS at the door"
* Warren Sapp to Haynesworth: "Let's stop the BS"
* Ron Saul would have taken Haynesworth out back
* Redskins alumni tee off on Haynesworth
* Theismann rips "classless" Haynesworth
* Charles Mann calls out Albert Haynesworth
* Rod Woodson nicknames Haynesworth "Big Baby"
* Bruschi wonders if Haynesworth loves football
* Albert Haynesworth's new boat
This was a franchise with an image problem. Three moves -- Bruce Allen, Mike Shanahan and Donovan McNabb -- were supposed to repair that. Instead, it was loony tunes.
1. The Conditioning Test
Look, you remember it as well as I do. The reporters streaming into open fields to try shuttle runs, the teammates being asked over and over again how quickly they run, the players from around the NFL chiming in, the weekly interrogations of Mike Shanahan. This, though, sums up those dark days:
Albert Haynesworth performed well Thursday on the first part of his conditioning test but failed to complete the two-part process and did not pass, according to people familiar with the situation. Haynesworth did so well in the first phase that one team source said he "killed it." But Haynesworth apparently needed a lavatory break midway through the second part and was unable to complete the test after returning and starting from the beginning.
Haynesworth's Lavatory Break will be my lasting, treasured memory of Albert Haynesworth's tenure in Washington.
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