Haynesworth won't start Friday, will play NT and DE
Redskins Coach Mike Shanahan said defensive lineman Albert Haynesworth will play both nose tackle and defensive end in Friday's preseason game against the New York Jets in East Rutherford, N.J., but will not start with the first team.
Haynesworth played exclusively nose tackle during the third quarter of last week's loss to the Baltimore Ravens, then complained about being relegated to the second half. Shanahan later said the playing time was basically meant as a conditioning stint for the ninth-year veteran, who has missed most of training camp after failing to pass a running test and struggling with a kidney condition that, sources said caused him to sit out more than two practices last week.
"Our game plan is to play him in a lot of different positions," Shanahan said. "He'll play end. He'll play nose, more end this week than nose like last week. We'll play him in certain substitution groups relative to the first team. We've got different nickels. We've got a lot of different ways we could do it. But talking about our base defense, he will not start with our first base defense."
After coming out of practice on Aug. 17 and missing practice the next two days, Haynesworth worked out last Friday and Shanahan allowed him to play Saturday night against the Ravens. Haynesworth practiced Monday and Tuesday with the rest of the Redskins - the two hardest practices this week - and returned to the practice field for Wednesday's lighter workout.
"He's had two good days of practice, and today was the third day for everybody," Shanahan said, "so hopefully he'll play well."
In the Redskins' new 3-4 scheme, Haynesworth prefers to play end rather than nose tackle. Shanahan was asked what the coaching staff likes about Haynesworth at that position.
"He's 6-foot-5, 6-foot-6, about 340 pounds," Shanahan said. "He moves very quick and is very talented. You get as many good players as you can and put him in the rotation. We'll get a chance at actually [seeing] him playing this weekend. He likes to play that position, we'll get a chance to see him in action."
In other news, Shanahan declined to say how snaps would be divided among the three backup quarterbacks - Rex Grossman, John Beck and Richard Bartel - in Donovan McNabb's absence. He also said that though Chris Horton and Reed Doughty are battling in practice to take over the starting free safety job for injured Kareem Moore, Doughty will start against the Jets.
August 25, 2010; 1:57 PM ET
Categories: Albert Haynesworth
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