Network News

X My Profile
View More Activity
On Twitter: RedskinsInsider and PostSports  |  Facebook  |  E-mail alerts: Redskins and Sports  |  RSS

Albert Haynesworth returns to Tenn. with mixed emotions

By Jason Reid

The Tennessee Titans selected defensive lineman Albert Haynesworth in the first round of the 2002 NFL draft. He spent the first seven years of his career with them.

On Sunday, Haynesworth will face his former team for the first time since Redskins owner Daniel M. Snyder lured him to Washington with a contract that included a then-record $41 million in guaranteed money. The Titans host the Redskins Sunday at LP Field. Haynesworth acknowledged Wednesday that it's not just another game for him.

"Yeah, I think it'll be a little weird," Haynesworth said Wednesday before practice at Redskins Park. "I mean, I practiced with 'em for seven years. ... Playing against the guys I kind of grew up, I guess, in an NFL football sense, with. I think it'll be fun. I think it'll definitely be fun."

Haynesworth, who still has a home in Nashville, had a good relationship with longtime Titans defensive line coach Jim Washburn. Tennessee's coaching staff gave Haynesworth an unusual amount of freedom for an interior lineman, and he was a first-team all-pro selection during the 2007-08 seasons.

The Titans' system helped Haynesworth achieve individual success, and "I think about it all the time, as far as what we did," the nine-year veteran said. "Now, I just try to incorporate [it] into what we do here. Last year, I couldn't really do it a whole lot.

"But now, this year, you know, I go talk to Has [defensive coordinator Jim Haslett], and he's real open. You see me standing up, you see me playing a lot of end. You see me doing a lot of things I did in Tennessee. It's helped a whole lot."

Before the Redskins switched from a 4-3 alignment to a 3-4 base, Coach Mike Shanahan initially told Haynesworth he planned to use him as a nose tackle. Haynesworth struggled at the nose and while playing defensive end in Washington's 3-4 base, known as "Okie," so Haslett persuaded Shanahan to permit him to use Haynesworth primarily in the nickel package. Haynesworth has more freedom in that alignment to rush the passer.

Because of Haslett's support and willingness to consider new things, Haynesworth no longer feels "deprived, like last year," he said. "I felt like I wasn't doing what I could do. But now, I'm getting back to it. It's still a different role, but still a little more similar to what I did at Tennessee."

But Haynesworth also still "thinks about the good old days. But you've got to move forward as a person."

On Oct. 8, Haynesworth's younger brother, Lance McCoy, died in Nashville after a motorcycle accident. Haynesworth left the team to be with his family, missing the Week 5 victory against the Green Bay Packers. This week will mark the first time Haynesworth has returned to the Nashville area since his brother's death.

Returning to the city, however, will not be difficult for Haynesworth because, he said, "I think of my brother every day. It doesn't matter where I'm at. I mean, I know it only happened, you know, probably seven or eight miles away from the stadium. He's still close to me and he's still with me. I think about him every day."

The Redskins played terribly Monday night during a 59-28 blowout loss to the Philadelphia Eagles. At 4-5, they trail the Eagles (6-3) and New York Giants, who are tied for the division lead, by two games. The Titians (5-4) are in a two-way tie with Jacksonville for second place in the AFC South, one game behind Indianapolis (6-3).

How will the Redskins respond after their embarrassing performance?

"You know, I don't really know," Haynesworth said. "I mean, I could tell you that maybe later in the week. See how we prepare and just see where our heads [are] at. It's kind of like do or die right now."

Haynesworth has been roundly criticized for laying on the ground while Eagles quarterback Michael Vick ran around before throwing one of his four touchdown passes. Haynesworth explained his side of things.

"Well, I got taken out by 'friendly fire,' " he said. "It was [defensive lineman] Vonnie Holliday. He like ran into my leg. And then, I had like a horse, a charley horse, in my thigh. I knocked him back, and then I thought I heard the whistle, so I kind of like stayed there for a second and gathered myself.

"And then I look up and like, 'He's still got the ball.' And then I looked and he throws the ball for a touchdown. It was being taken out by my own teammate and then also thinking that whistle had already blown."

In the Week 7 victory over Chicago and the Week 8 loss to Detroit, Haynesworth played extremely well. He believes the Titans would have preferred that Haynesworth had stayed with that organization.

"Do they wish they still had me? Yeah," Haynesworth said. "[Sometimes] I wish I was still back there, because I feel like I could still be dominant. I think people still think that I'm not playing as good as I can or whatever.

"But all of it ain't about the player. Sometimes it's the scheme a little bit. But here, you know, we're getting back to it. Like, they're letting me play. So you're seeing a lot more production out of me than you did last year and earlier this year."

By Jason Reid  | November 17, 2010; 1:06 PM ET
Categories:  Albert Haynesworth  
Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   Del.icio.us   StumbleUpon   Technorati   Google Buzz   Previous: Redskins saw no spitting during Eagles game
Next: Brandon Banks knew he would play despite surgery

Comments

F Albert Haynesworth.

I've come full circle with this dude. Hated it when we signed him, came around to rooting for him and defending him and considering him our most talented defensive player, and now absolutely loathing him.

F this dude. Leave him in Nashville when the team plane takes off. Sheesh.

Posted by: NateinthePDX | November 17, 2010 1:17 PM | Report abuse

Too long...not reading this.

Posted by: PlayAction | November 17, 2010 1:22 PM | Report abuse


dive ass

Posted by: PlayAction | November 17, 2010 1:20 PM |

I like this

Posted by: hessone | November 17, 2010 1:23 PM | Report abuse

Ah...the good ole days when people loved me and not my money.

Posted by: fat_back | November 17, 2010 1:23 PM | Report abuse


fwiw, playing vs vick is like playing a totally different type of offense. His mobility led to several successful pass plays, in addition to his effective runs.

Posted by: zcezcest1 | November 17, 2010 1:08 PM |

agree zcezcest, after all, vick was injured in the first game as he was running the ball and almost scored a TD on the play. not so sure we win that game if we don't knock vick out there

Posted by: hessone | November 17, 2010 1:24 PM | Report abuse

"Well, I got taken out by 'friendly fire,' " he said. "It was [Umm.. lemme see,now] Vonnie Holliday [yeah, that's the ticket]. He like ran into my [um...] leg [yeah, that's the ticket]. And then, I had like a horse [no, that's not right.. a pony... no, a charley horse... yeah, that's the ticket], a charley horse, in my thigh. I knocked him back, and then I [um.. what can I say...] thought I heard the whistle [yeah, that's the ticket], so I kind of like stayed there for a second and [um...] gathered myself [are they buying this?].

With all due respect to Jon Lovitz, I fixed Albert's excuse.

Posted by: RedSkinHead | November 17, 2010 1:26 PM | Report abuse

Dude expects to "feel the love" again when he steps back into LP Field...

Barring that, a couple of working-class Nashville fillies should do the trick... literally.

Posted by: Vic1 | November 17, 2010 1:26 PM | Report abuse

Spitting is dumb...and gross.

Posted by: PlayAction | November 17, 2010 1:14 PM | Report abuse

Except in Porn!

Posted by: monk811 | November 17, 2010 1:27 PM | Report abuse

Ah...the good ole days when people loved me and not my money.

Posted by: fat_back | November 17, 2010 1:23 PM | Report abuse

Uh oh, look who's back!!! Does this mean Poopy is making a comeback as well?

Posted by: monk811 | November 17, 2010 1:31 PM | Report abuse

hess...here's the thing, and I'll try and write it in terms that even YOU might understand...I've moved on from the DT thing, I've stopped talking about it, you, on the other hand, keep bringing it up..you've yet to stop pissing and whining on an almost DAILY basis about snyder...you sound like a 12 year old girl...

Posted by: BeantownGreg1 | November 17, 2010 1:33 PM | Report abuse

Does this mean Poopy is making a comeback as well?

Posted by: monk811 | November 17, 2010 1:31 PM

Hope so!

Posted by: PlayAction | November 17, 2010 1:33 PM | Report abuse

and listening to you whine about how folks TRUELY feel about the redskins is pathetic. I hope the redskins turn it around, but I've seen enough of this owner after 10 YEARS take money from folks and blow it on has-beens, which is what the new crowned GM did right out of the gate. who was he trying to impress with trading draft picks for old vets, snyder ?

Posted by: hessone | November 17, 2010 12:56 PM

What I don't get Hess is if you know how the next ten years will be playing out (like the last 10 years) why root for the Skins and post on this board? No matter how much you complain it is not changing who will be the owner of the Skins for the next 40 years, so what is the point?

You may as will go back to Boycott Dan $nyder.

Posted by: kerzon417 | November 17, 2010 1:34 PM | Report abuse

Terrible, terrible explanation.

It would have sounded better if he just said, "Dude, I'm 328 lbs and I was tired as sh!t. I fukced up. My bad."

Sounds like he's trying to blame VHoliday or someone else.

Posted by: Alan4 | November 17, 2010 1:38 PM | Report abuse

dive ass

Posted by: PlayAction | November 17, 2010 1:46 PM | Report abuse

Not sure what's worse.

pabrain or hessone
herpes or gonorrhea

I'll go with pabrain (at least he's so stupid you get a lil laugh) and herpes.

Posted by: Diesel44 | November 17, 2010 1:48 PM | Report abuse


hess...here's the thing, and I'll try and write it in terms that even YOU might understand...I've moved on from the DT thing, I've stopped talking about it, you, on the other hand, keep bringing it up..you've yet to stop pissing and whining on an almost DAILY basis about snyder...you sound like a 12 year old girl...

Posted by: BeantownGreg1 | November 17, 2010 1:33 PM |

your analysis of me is funny greg.

I have posted football talk on this board. some posters brought up the fact that snyder and the team haven't changed the way that it has operated for over a decade now, after monday nights collapse. I agree with this assessment and have discussed it with folks that have been reasonable about it, or have agreed to disagree. there's an old core of posters, including you, that see things ONE WAY and love to defend snyder for some reason. one thought is because he's willing to spend money to win. WTF greg, every owner is out there spending money to win. you even post baseball, basketball, and movies on a football board. you think peeps come here for that. grow up, talk football, quit accusing folks of being something you THINK they are.

Posted by: hessone | November 17, 2010 1:52 PM | Report abuse

I'm tired of hearing the, "How will the Skins respond" headlines. I heard the same thing after the Detroit loss too. Means nothing.

Posted by: ga8085 | November 17, 2010 1:52 PM | Report abuse

"Do they wish they still had me? Yeah," Haynesworth said.

Too bad they didn't want you enough to trade a 3rd Rounder for you there Al.

Posted by: MColeman51 | November 17, 2010 1:56 PM | Report abuse

Posted by: patljr7 | November 17, 2010 1:58 PM | Report abuse

This is what makes Albert so hateable. He's just blatantly lying about it and making up excuses on the fly. He doesn't care at all.

Posted by: SavedByZero | November 17, 2010 2:05 PM | Report abuse

This is what makes Albert so hateable. He's just blatantly lying about it and making up excuses on the fly. He doesn't care at all.

Posted by: SavedByZero | November 17, 2010 2:05 PM

Sounds like a HC I know.

Posted by: TWISI | November 17, 2010 2:22 PM | Report abuse

Hey everybody, it's the Haynesworth Haiku Hour!

We all hate Haynesworth,
Redskins Park Custodians
also: CLOGGED TOILETS!!!

Eating at buffets,
Impregnating fat strippers,
You guessed it: FAT AL!!!

Posted by: monk811 | November 17, 2010 2:24 PM | Report abuse


Why should the Titans give up a 3rd rounder for Haynesworth when they can get for free this offseason, with a cheaper contract to boot.

Btw, Haynesworth wasn't the reason this team lost - preparation was. Now whom do you blame for that?

Posted by: Skinz4Lyfe | November 17, 2010 2:29 PM | Report abuse

AH is the epitome of the athlete that: has his $$ and doesn't care anymore; opens his mouth and nonsense falls out; lives in yesteryear; probably the kind of teammate others loath (just guessing).

Wish we could get something for him and move on.

Posted by: kirkoman | November 17, 2010 2:30 PM | Report abuse

I get, the bloggas are saying if AH would've gotten up, that play would have made the difference. BS. AH is and will always be a target regardless of how he does on the field.

How about blaming the other piss poor performers for that mess too. Start with anyone on defense, coaches and players. Or how about My Way Mike's preparation and game plan.

Posted by: dcwun | November 17, 2010 2:43 PM | Report abuse

I get, the bloggas are saying if AH would've gotten up, that play would have made the difference. BS. AH is and will always be a target regardless of how he does on the field.

How about blaming the other piss poor performers for that mess too. Start with anyone on defense, coaches and players. Or how about My Way Mike's preparation and game plan.

Posted by: dcwun | November 17, 2010 2:43 PM
-------------------------------------------
I don't think anyone is suggesting that if Haynesworth would have gotten up the Redskins would have won. Conversely, would it have hurt the team if Haynesworth would have hustled and made a play? It's a team sport, true that, but it starts with the attitude of every individual. If you have one guy that hustles and makes a play, it can be contagious. If you have one guy who lays in the mud and doesn't bother to get up and help his teammates, it really doesn't inspire anyone to play harder, now does it?

Posted by: RedSkinHead | November 17, 2010 3:03 PM | Report abuse

I don't see how this team bounces back from what was a national embarrassment this past Monday night. If the Redskins fall behind early this Sunday...look out! This team will implode faster than you can say "NFL" and panic will be at an epic level. I have seen the worst this team has had to offer over the past eleven years and I can't remember a more hopeless situation than what the Redskins are in now! I am finding it hard to even see Shanahan here next season. With a lockout looming it makes sense to me that if the Redskins play continues to decline...I can see McNabb and Shanahan outta here. I believe Bruce Allen would stay if he was given the opportunity to run things.

It's funny but a fresh start would be a good thing. And I know thats what was suppose to have happened this year with the hiring of Shanahan and Allen but what has happened has been anything but "fresh". The trade for McNabb was old School "Danny Boy" which is not "fresh"!

Snyder needs to walk away from having any ideas that he knows how to build a winning NFL Football team because he has not a clue! Let Bruce Allen start the rebuild with complete trust from Snyder. IT's possible that Allen might be albe to turn this thing around.

First he needs to find a young, talented, and hungry Head Coach that the Redskins can trust to be around for ten plus years. The Redskins have got to stop bringing old washed up coaches in here just as much as they need to stop trading away draft picks for old washed up star players. Stability is need here. We all need stability and this Franchise and its fans are starving for it! Stability at the ownership level is not a substitue for stability at the coaching level and it almost seems that that's what Snyder believes, given the number of coaches he has gone thru.

Why do the Redskins need a "Young" head coach? Simple. The systemic issues that exist with the Redskins are miles deep and it will take years to right the wrongs of the past ten-eleven years. A whole new approach is need in Washington. A "young" coach would have time on his side. Shanahan has an expiration date and if recent history serves...Shanahan's time with the Redskins will expire in a few years. That is not enough time to fix this Franchise. That's only enough time to further harm it. You could say that Kyle Shanahan is suppose to take over after his dad retires but is that really a good thing?

There is no doubt for me that at this time next year...Washington Redskins fans will be calling for Snyder's head and calling out their coaches and players for being the worst team in the NFL for the third season in a row.

GO CAPS!!!

Posted by: ekbinion68 | November 17, 2010 3:35 PM | Report abuse

F Albert. I don't understand why WaPo thinks we care what he feels after his lack of performance this week.

Posted by: JulzDC | November 17, 2010 3:44 PM | Report abuse

Albert is one of the hardest working guys in the NFL. Numerous times I've told my son, "Watch this cat. He really gets after it." My son now thinks of Al as a role model. I probably will name my next son after Thin Al!

Posted by: terptek | November 17, 2010 4:02 PM | Report abuse

Haynesworth no longer feels "deprived, like last year," he said.

What the heck? "Deprived"?

a million dollars a game and he has the word "deprived" in his vocabulary when describing his job!

This is why so many people hate the NFL and its self-absorbed, overpaid, players

Posted by: jackson641 | November 18, 2010 2:27 PM | Report abuse

Post a Comment

We encourage users to analyze, comment on and even challenge washingtonpost.com's articles, blogs, reviews and multimedia features.

User reviews and comments that include profanity or personal attacks or other inappropriate comments or material will be removed from the site. Additionally, entries that are unsigned or contain "signatures" by someone other than the actual author will be removed. Finally, we will take steps to block users who violate any of our posting standards, terms of use or privacy policies or any other policies governing this site. Please review the full rules governing commentaries and discussions.




characters remaining

 
 
RSS Feed
Subscribe to The Post

© 2010 The Washington Post Company