A Burgundy and Gold Obsession
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  1. #1

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    Indiana

    Default A Fat Al Supporter?!?

    Stumbling across this while digging around online today popped my eyebrows up a bit(!), someone actually coming to Fat Al Haynesworth's defense. Patrick Hruby, a freelance writer and contributor to ESPN.com said the following:

    An Albert Haynesworth defense motion
    Isn't he doing exactly what you'd do if you had his leverage? So what's the problem?
    EmailPrintComments
    By Patrick Hruby
    Special to ESPN.com
    Archive | Contact
    Sentences I never thought I'd write:

    Switzerland 1, Spain 0.

    Kendrick Perkins may be the key to an NBA title.

    Please welcome Democratic South Carolina Senate candidate Alvin Greene.

    And now this:

    I'm sympathetic to Albert Haynesworth.

    Totally so.

    In fact, I can't fault him whatsoever.

    This, I know, is an unpopular position. Like, BP-executive-crocodile-tears unpopular. Since the disgruntled Washington Redskins defensive tackle blew off a mandatory team minicamp on Wednesday -- apparently to force a trade -- Haynesworth has become this week's poster boy for athletic selfishness, entitlement run amok, global warming, the breakup of the Gores and the fall of Rome in the west.


    AP Photo/Rob Carr
    If you've got it, flaunt it. And Albert Haynesworth has it. Leverage, that is.
    And that's just in his own locker room.

    Redskins linebacker London Fletcher reportedly said Haynesworth "can't be depended on," while teammate Phillip Daniels claimed "he really turned his back on us." Coach Mike Shanahan expressed disappointment that the 2008 NFL Defensive Player of the Year is staying home despite collecting a $21 million bonus on April 1, never mind that Washington was contractually obligated to pay the entire sum. (The nerve of that guy!)

    Meanwhile, one national writer labeled Haynesworth pro football's biggest diva; a Washington, D.C., columnist likened him to a spoiled 3-year-old; and no less an authority than former Redskins quarterback Joe Theismann said on satellite radio that the defensive tackle "offers nothing as a person, as a player, as a teammate" -- an assessment that more or less hits for the dead-to-me cycle.

    To quote esteemed late-20th century philosopher Keanu Reeves: Whoa.

    Look, I can't comment on Haynesworth as a person. I know he's not the sort of dude you want stomping on you, any more than you'd want to share a row with him in coach. But personal charm isn't the issue. The issue is simple.

    Is Haynesworth actually doing something wrong?

    Is he behaving in an inappropriate, intolerable, incomprehensible manner?

    Does he richly deserve the slings and arrows already heading his way?

    No. No. And, of course, no.

    First of all, Haynesworth is hardly a diva. Divas by definition have incredible lung capacity; they don't need to take sideline breathers under deeply dubious auspices. More to the point, Haynesworth isn't being unduly selfish, disloyal or conniving. Nuh-uh. He's just using the leverage he has to maximum effect, something the rest of us do every single day of our lives.

    What, you've never negotiated a car price? Hung up on an insufferable significant other? Made your uncooperative child go to his room? Used personal power to get what you want?

    Please.

    Haynesworth's argument essentially goes like this:

    I signed with the Redskins expecting to be a havoc-creating, quarterback-attacking playmaker in a 4-3 defense. That's the role in which I excel; that's the style of play I enjoy; that's what was promised during my free-agent courtship. Only now, the team has shifted to a new coaching staff and a new 3-4 scheme, which basically asks me to eat double-team blocks. Thanks, but no thanks. I'd like a little more excitement. A lot more glory. Please send me somewhere else.

    Is that really so awful? So craven?

    Because this column is about the 6-foot-6, 350-pound Haynesworth -- and not, say, the 5-6, 185-pound Darren Sproles -- let's try a food analogy. Imagine you're a pastry chef. The top pastry chef in New York. A bunch of restaurants want you. One restaurant offers you more money than the others, plus the opportunity to run the dessert menu. You take it. A year later, the same restaurant switches to an all-fondue format and demands that you become a sous chef, chopping chocolate-dippable fruit wedges in the back room.

    Technically, you're still preparing dessert. And you're still working with sugar. Woo-hoo! But otherwise, it's not exactly the gig you signed up for. Would you be annoyed? Feeling jerked around? Would you maybe call in sick and check the restaurant want ads, even though you're perfectly healthy? Would you try to prepare apple tarts somewhere else, perhaps move to a soufflé-friendly city like Boston or Philadelphia?


    Mitchell Layton/Getty Images
    He played only one season in the Skins' 4-3 defense. Should he have to play the next six in a 3-4?
    You would? Good. 'Cause all of the above is pretty much Haynesworth's situation. A situation that makes his reaction both understandably human and adult, as opposed to that of the world's largest pouting toddler.

    (Note to angry Redskins fans: Please, no photoshops. "Adult Babies" on Jerry Springer is already too much. The & horror).

    Speaking of impotent rage: Skins supporters, team members or press box critics upset over Haynesworth's intransigence maybe ought to direct some of their ire toward the club's financial decision-makers. After all, Haynesworth wouldn't have so much leverage -- $21 million worth, which last I checked goes a long way, Antoine Walker excluded -- if Washington hadn't been stupid enough to cut such a large check.

    Correction: a bonus check. Not a check for playing. A check for agreeing to play. Which Haynesworth did. And now he's a bad guy? For saying yes to a big, fat sack of cash, real-life Monopoly money?

    Really?

    Time for another dessert analogy. You're a parent. You make your child dinner. Before dinner is served, you feed your kid a triple-scoop hot fudge sundae. Upon digging in to the main course, your kid refuses to eat. Too full. Not interested.

    Who's to blame, you or the child?

    Who's to blame for this impasse, the Redskins or Haynesworth?

    Bottom line: Haynesworth doesn't deserve the flak he's receiving. And frankly, the flak is more than a little hypocritical. Fact is, he's doing exactly the same thing his use-and-discard NFL brethren would do if ownership didn't hold all the financial cards; the same thing panicking, overworked sports writers would do if the newspaper industry wasn't bleeding jobs like oil gushing into the gulf; the same thing all of us would do if we weren't running scared in a wheezing, job-poor economy.

    He's dictating terms to his employers. Take this job and shove it? Not quite. But not far off, either.

    Hmmm. Come to think of it, I'm not sympathetic to Haynesworth, after all.

    I'm jealous.

    Patrick Hruby is a freelance writer and ESPN.com contributor. Contact him at PatrickHruby.net.
    Article link: http://sports.espn.go.com/espn/comme...e=hruby/100617

    As soon as I read it, I knew I had to post it because it's...well, to be nice about it...unique. Now I have to try to get my eyebrows back down to their normal position-below my hairline.
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    I'm giving it a 2-4 year window. Looking for improvement in all areas. Redskins, you're on the clock.

  2. #2

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    Wilbon gave Al a "standing ovation from the West Coast." Of course Wilbon just hates the offseason training program in general, and likes anything that flies in the face of it.
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  3. #3

    Vescere bracis meis

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    Then Al should have told the team he would take his release (that they offered before the bonus was paid) and become a free agent where he could find a team that would better meet his demands. Instead he took 21 million dollars and said everything was fine.

    Sorry. The contrary argument is something like from time to time but you aren't going to sell me on this one.
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  4. #4
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    Hruby is looking for a little attention by staking out the anti position. He utterly misses the point---Haynesworth took the $21 under agreement with Shanahan that it meant he would be a Redskin. Then he failed to live up to his end of the bargain and is keeping the money. It's black and white.

    I think Hruby knows that and doesn't care. It's about getting his name out there.
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    Eschew obfuscation.

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    I honestly don't think Haynesworth's actions haven't made him very many friends around the league, and he's going to have a hard time finding a team that wants him. Unfortunately, he still has our $21M, so he may not need to. Here's to him getting hit by a bus!
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  6. #6
    kirbster
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    I saw this last night and blasted Hruby in an email. He disgusts me.

    (I mentioned that his wife must be thrilled with his view of [dis]honoring contracts, and she's probably wondering how he's honoring his marriage "contract")
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  7. #7

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    Indiana

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    Quote Originally Posted by Lanky Livingston View Post
    I honestly don't think Haynesworth's actions haven't made him very many friends around the league, and he's going to have a hard time finding a team that wants him. Unfortunately, he still has our $21M, so he may not need to. Here's to him getting hit by a bus!
    Lanky, I started doing my usual digging around other team fan boards to get a feel for NFL fan reaction to Fat Al's latest antics and talk about losing friends-among most fans he's rocketed to #1 on the list of Biggest Douchebags In The NFL-with a couple of interesting exceptions, the Detroit Lions fans are salivating-even posting a willingness to offer a 3rd or 4th round pick for him, for some inexplicable reason the Jacksonville Jaguars fans (they're weird anyway), and some Titans fans who are still wanting him back-although at a much lower price than they were willing to fork over. Interestingly, since it was mentioned somewhere here that the Vikings might have a need/interest their fans have posted almost nothing about the Washington/Haynesworth situation to speak of at all.
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    I'm giving it a 2-4 year window. Looking for improvement in all areas. Redskins, you're on the clock.

  8. #8

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    Time for another dessert analogy. You're a parent. You make your child dinner. Before dinner is served, you feed your kid a triple-scoop hot fudge sundae. Upon digging in to the main course, your kid refuses to eat. Too full. Not interested.
    So it's our fault Haynesworth is acting like a spoiled child?
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  9. #9

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    Quote Originally Posted by Om View Post
    Haynesworth took the $21 under agreement with Shanahan that it meant he would be a Redskin. Then he failed to live up to his end of the bargain and is keeping the money. It's black and white.
    God knows, I wish I could agree with ya here, but I can't. If it was in Fat boys contract he gets 21 mil on April 1st for being on the roster, it doesn't matter what he and Shanny discussed. Short of amending his contract, or completely rewriting it when the discussion happened, the days of a gentlemen's agreement are long gone. Shanny got owned in a big way.

    That being said, I only proves again how big of a tool Fatty is, but it seems he's not as dumb as many think. IN my book, he's the biggest walking pile of pig **** I can ever remember putting on a Skins uniform. He's consistently shown his lack of character, immaturity, and now lack of ethics. My only hope is that this is truly the end of the era of harebrained signings of overpriced losers.

    Go on, take the money and ru.... walk fat ass, because we know you can't run for more then 20 seconds without falling to the ground from exhaustion.
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  10. #10
    kirbster
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    I don't agree Miles. By taking the $21M Haynesworthless was agreeing to continue to honor his contract, so he's in major breach. Morally and ethically he must either play or return the money. He's such a douchebag for not finding another team to go to when he had the chance, but once he cashed that check, he gave up his right to demand a trade. Nothing's changed since then to make him want to leave; he'd made that decision already.
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  11. #11

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    Kirbster, the Skins giving the 21 mil was in keeping with the contract they gave fat boy. From what I've seen, he did nothing contractually wrong by taking it. A breach, I would say happened when tubby didn't show for a mandatory team activity. Even so, we have little recourse from what I've read, with minor fines for days missed, and not much more.

    Again, what he's pulled is completely unethical, but Shanny saying if you take the money we expect you to be the best where ever we put you was something he really had no right to say if the 21 mil was purely a bonus for being on the roster on 4-1-2010.

    Please understand, I hate the man-child, despise the dishonor hes done to the Skins, and can only hope he gets the world s worse case of crotch rot, and piles the size of baseball bats.

    Until the legal folks for the team go public with something to the contrary, it looks like fatty slipped a fast ball by management.
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  12. #12
    kirbster
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    Taking the $21M was a commitment by AH to honor his contract which is what he's trying not to do. Many who've examined the contract are saying the Redskins might be able to recoup some of it.

    There's a special place in Hell for people like Haynesworthless.
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  13. #13

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    Nah Miles the underlying premise is you're taking the money to play football on a football team. Yeah in legalese that's not what the contract states but the implication is clear if you take the money in a football contract you're signing on to play for that team the way they ask unless it's specifically spelled out otherwise in the contract. It's a matter of principle not technicalities. It's pretty simple to pretty much everyone who's ever worked a day in their life, if you get hired and payed to work for a company, occasionally that company might ask you to do things that weren't spelled out in that contract. Most of us do what our boss asks, we don't respond with "Not in my job description". If anything the response might be a request for more money to do the extra work, but in this case it's a guy who's being asked to do no more work than before and he's already the highest payed at his position in the entire league.

    No the Skins can't force Haynesworth to show for anything and can only fine him until he no shows for TC and beyond. But Shanny was spot on in his characterization of the scenario...this is simple, you took the money so you must be prepared to go to work and you can't claim you were duped, you knew it was a 3-4 when you took the check. Roster bonuses etc are just shady ways of finding more money to make the players happy, it aint done on the team's behalf.

    Saying he doesn't owe them jack for that "bonus" is spin and getting away from the principle of it all. It can go both ways, the skins didn't have to pay them so much up front, it was a good faith move...that's the heart of this issue. One party having acted in good faith on the player's behalf and the other showing no hint of good faith on their part whatsoever, whether it be showing up out of shape, taking plays off, faking injuries, missing workouts or not showing at all they all reflect a player not doing his part to earn that "bonus" that he was paid up front. Whether they call it a roster bonus or signing bonus or whatever, it's just creative wording and ways of divvying up his pay so he can get payed up front instead of by straight standard NFL contract structure or worse for a player: backloaded.

    The Redskins shouldn't be punished because they got creative with structure to make the player happy.
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  14. #14
    kirbster
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    Well put, CT! You said so much of what I think about the situation but explained it much better than I could've.
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  15. #15

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    Remember, I'm one the same side as everybody here, but even you state the fact of the matter in you reply to me.

    Quote Originally Posted by CounterTrey View Post
    Nah Miles the underlying premise is you're taking the money to play football on a football team. Yeah in legalese that's not what the contract states but the implication is clear if you take the money in a football contract you're signing on to play for that team the way they ask unless it's specifically spelled out otherwise in the contract.
    Fatty obviously doesn't care about the premise, or implications, and in reality, the legalese is all that matters to a piece of trash like him, and all you can actually take action on.


    Quote Originally Posted by CounterTrey View Post
    It's a matter of principle not technicalities.
    It's a matter of principle to 99.97% of the people who care about the situation, people that have what may be called normal ethics and principles. The 0.03%, fatty and his agent, see it as pure technicalities.


    Quote Originally Posted by CounterTrey View Post
    It's pretty simple to pretty much everyone who's ever worked a day in their life, if you get hired and payed to work for a company, occasionally that company might ask you to do things that weren't spelled out in that contract.
    That's all fine and dandy in the world of us little people. None of us were spoiled children who have been spoon fed since the 6th grade to do but one thing in life, play a game for lots of money. The NFL is not the real world, as are most sports. It would be wonderful to apply our rules to this, but playing pro sports isn't quite the same as shoveling horse ****, writing code, repairing motorcycles, or being a stock broker. While we think the rules are the same, we've seem time and again that some players go by a different set of rules.


    Quote Originally Posted by CounterTrey View Post
    No the Skins can't force Haynesworth to show for anything and can only fine him until he no shows for TC and beyond.
    Exactly. As of now, fatty has only missed a mandatory mini camp, but that's barely a minor infraction contractually, if an infraction at all as it's not preseason training camp.

    Quote Originally Posted by CounterTrey View Post
    But Shanny was spot on in his characterization of the scenario...this is simple, you took the money so you must be prepared to go to work and you can't claim you were duped, you knew it was a 3-4 when you took the check. Roster bonuses etc are just shady ways of finding more money to make the players happy, it aint done on the team's behalf.
    Shanny would be spot on had he been dealing with a man of charecter, with normal principles and ethics. It's obvious now that he wasn't, and got played buy a guy who never planned on playing for the Skins this year, but new contractually he could get the money, a have a great chance of keeping a hell of a lot of it without ever stepping on the field. Yes, I'm saying this was calculated.... premeditated..... and played well on his part thus far.

    Quote Originally Posted by CounterTrey View Post
    Saying he doesn't owe them jack for that "bonus" is spin and getting away from the principle of it all. It can go both ways, the skins didn't have to pay them so much up front, it was a good faith move...that's the heart of this issue. One party having acted in good faith on the player's behalf and the other showing no hint of good faith on their part whatsoever, whether it be showing up out of shape, taking plays off, faking injuries, missing workouts or not showing at all they all reflect a player not doing his part to earn that "bonus" that he was paid up front. Whether they call it a roster bonus or signing bonus or whatever, it's just creative wording and ways of divvying up his pay so he can get payed up front instead of by straight standard NFL contract structure or worse for a player: backloaded.

    The Redskins shouldn't be punished because they got creative with structure to make the player happy.
    I agree completely, but I'm an ethical man, with solid principles I live my life at work and home by. The problem is, everybody is trying to apply ethics and principle to a guy that has show not one gram of these traits.

    While I would love to view this as a matter of principle as everybody seems to, it's obvious that one of the major party involved never had any, so I can only view it from a technical standpoint now.

    No, I'm not happy about the situation. Yes, I would love to give him a few swift kicks in the nuts. I despise everything about the guy, wish we never signed him even before all this happened, and just want it to be over so we can go into camp ready to rock.

    Again, I'm on the same side as the rest here, just alone in viewing it from the purely technical side.
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  16. #16

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    Gotcha!

    I think we're basically on the same page, everyone knows Shanny is right and everyone also knows there's not much they can do about missing A.H. OTA's etc.
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    I think we're missing a key factor here as well. The difference between Bruce Allen and Vinny Cerrato is that, whatever the team decides to do in terms of addressing the Albert Haynesworth situation, it won't be based on vindictiveness, or pacifying/assuaging Dan Snyder's ego. It'll be what's in the best interests of the Washington Redskins and the team itself.

    I have every confidence that this will be the case.
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  18. #18
    kirbster
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    Good point, Boone. How sweet it is to have Allen in charge!
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  19. #19
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    Albert is not only hurting himself and the team, he is hurting his fellow players around the NFL. When it comes time to negotiate a new CBA, you can bet your bottom dollar there will be a Haynesworth clause(s) in there and the owners simply won't budge on ensuring it's added. The players may gripe but they won't have a leg to stand on, thanks to you know who.
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  20. #20

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jimbo View Post
    Albert is not only hurting himself and the team, he is hurting his fellow players around the NFL. When it comes time to negotiate a new CBA, you can bet your bottom dollar there will be a Haynesworth clause(s) in there and the owners simply won't budge on ensuring it's added. The players may gripe but they won't have a leg to stand on, thanks to you know who.
    Jimbo, in my digging around other team fan forums I found this aspect of the situation discussed several places-most notably on a San Diego Chargers forum where it took over the thread. Most agree that Fat Al has just about insured that contracts like his will include some type of "just-in-case recoup" clause for the team to prevent scenarios like this from developing. The "I'm gonna get traded for a fat contract and then just set my own pace and style of how I play for the team" attitude may find tough going in the next CBA.
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    I'm giving it a 2-4 year window. Looking for improvement in all areas. Redskins, you're on the clock.

 

 

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