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PFT: Haynesworth, Shanahan exchange words after failed conditioning test


We've been very critical -- and rightfully so -- of Redskins defensive tackle Albert Haynesworth, whose refusal to attempt to earn more than $30 million he has been paid by the team was punctuated by a decision not to show...

Three things:

First - I don't have an issue with making Haynesworth pass a test none of the guys who participated in the offseason program have to take. No biggie to me and it makes perfect sense. I am guessing Florio has a bone to pick with the team, Shanahan or both.

Second - I am in good shape, weigh less than half what Al does and have a history as both a sprinter and middle distance runner and I could not do 2, back to back, 300 yard shuttle runs, at least not under a specified time of like 20 minutes or so. Especially not in the August heat/humidity of Ashburn. Not trying to defend Al here, just saying...

Third - Yeah Mike, you have steel nads. We all know it. News flash, real men don't have to abuse and embarrass other men under their control, even if they deserve it, to prove that. Who is making who a distraction now?
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I guess Al shouldn't have taken such a LOOOOONG dump in between the first and second set. :toilet:

Shanny pissing on Haynesworth this soon only slightly surprises me. As coach of the Broncos, we didn't call Mike "Little Napolean" for nothing.




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Coaches dog players every hour of every day of training camp. Much of nothing here.
Screw Haynesworth - he deserves whatever pain, hardship, unfairness he gets. He's gone out of his way asking for it. And you guys are missing the point - whatever message Shanahan is sending, it's not intended for Haynesworth (who is probably impervious to leadership).

It's meant for everybody else.
I think he's simply trying to send the message - you're either 100% committed and will do everything you're being asked to do to be a part of the team and help them win, or you're not. The mouth that roared (CP) may be quiet now - but you don't think seeing how this coach handles Haynesworth puts an exclamation mark on the point for him? I'm not necessarily saying I think Shanahan needs to go hard corps here - I'm just saying he's not doing it to get Haynesworth attention as much to send the message 'this is how it's going to be in DC'.

My take anyway.
It may have that effect, Boone, but I don't for a minute think that is what it's about. I absolutely believe it is about Mike proving his thing is bigger and frankly, real leaders of men don't have to do that.

And I am not saying Al hasn't earned it either. But right now, Mike is making Al the distraction he promised not to be.

At least that is how I am reading it.
Well - I will say I hope this isn't an extended drama. We don't have time for it. If it goes on much longer, I might work my way around to agreeing with you :)
Neo, I think you make a good point as far as leaders and their tactics, but different tactics are used for different individuals all the time and sometimes this sort of tactic is necessary.

There are times when hard nosed, in your face tactics need to be employed! Some people just don't hear unless it is LOUD and clear.

This is likely going to sour Big Al, but so what! He needs to know that he is not the man in charge here. He is a pawn, at most a knight, in the scheme of things. Mike Shanahan is in charge of this team on the field and he should hammer that point down on day one!

Kudos Mike Shanahan!
what will happen next ? this may continue into a big problem... i allready read where Mike said he would not practise with the starters... I guess now he just won't practise at all....what does Al have to do now ? I'm thinking you mess with the bull you get the horns...Al started it and Mikes in the drivers seat now...my my how the tables have turned.
Sometimes leaders need to find out what they have right away. There are lots of question marks with Big Al and there is no time to wait and see. If Big Al responds and cedes to Shanahans authority, all will be well. If his attitude goes south, it was only a matter of time. In either case Shanahan is going to know what he's go in Big Al pretty quickly.
This year, we have a head coach who expects all players to be hard working athletes. He is like the admiral of a mighty aircraft carrier battle group.

Last year, we had Julie McCoy, your cruise director - and Albert was the captain's daughter. That boat no longer sails.

Look for the message to be sent again tomorrow. Sometime thereafter, Albert can practice with the second team.
I kinda lean toward Neo's and Mike's take on this situation. Shanahan's actions, while appealing to the emotional response of "slapping down the insolent pup" also continues to put attention and focus on Haynesworth as a distraction at a time when the focus, I would think, needs to be on the team coalescing into a functioning unit.

It sounded like Shanny was proving a point, namely "cross me, willya?!?'. I'll be keeping an eye on this aspect of his coaching style-which is a less-than-glistening part of his coaching resume. Yeah, he's the boss, as he should be, but everything I've been hearing shows the team buying into his program more than they've bought into one in quite a while-which I really like-which makes the extra added "emphasis" he put on the Big Al situation come across as just a bit too "Me versus Al" as opposed to how best to get Big Al up to the physical level necessary for effective performance.Was the extra 300 yard sprint in July heat really going to be useful in those terms? I frankly doubt it-a statement to Al that his insufficient level of conditioning will be rectified would have been more effective.

And would have seemed a bit less "who's being petulant now?"
When I played football in HS if the team slacked off during a game, the coach would make us run Oklahoma drills for the next practice (all two hours of it).
And even if we worked out all off season and couldn't run a mile in a certain time, we had to do it every morning before practice until we could.

So Haynesworth running shuttles for Shanahan doesn't surprise me or upset me that much. Even if he planned on making Haynesworth fail.

I know.....I know, "but WD this is the pros".
Well, you don't piss off the coach and hopefully we don't see Haynesworth flopping around the field like a fish out of water every game this year (like we saw in most of 2009).
This year, we have a head coach who expects all players to be hard working athletes. He is like the admiral of a mighty aircraft carrier battle group.

Last year, we had Julie McCoy, your cruise director - and Albert was the captain's daughter. That boat no longer sails.

Look for the message to be sent again tomorrow. Sometime thereafter, Albert can practice with the second team.

Hah! Great post! Very true and made me laugh out loud at the Julie MCCoy crack. :clap2:

So let me get this straight, the poor guy had to do 2 300's (not even a full lap as a 400, they had em doing 300's!) with a 5 minute break in between and someone is defending it as being anything other than an easy task? Seriously??? These guys are supposed to be pro athletes, this should be child's play.

I think MS is doing what he has to do as the leader of a new regime trying to change a decade long culture of losing. He's gotta lay down the law hard now and Albert is just a means to an end. If he doesn't drop the hammer on Al then we're right back to players thinking they can manipulate or abuse things based on their paycheck or ties to the owner or something similar. Make it clear now that you aren't above the team and it will resonate for years to come.

Oh and I think most of the other linemen have had to do the equivalent of this at some point by now so I don't think Al is being picked on, he missed time working that others didn't. There's no room to gripe about being singled out when you singled yourself out from team workouts before. If he'd shown up on time and not missed any OTA's then this wouldn't be happening. Seems completely logical and reasonable to me. It's the Pro Ball equivalent of running laps.

Oh and not to be an arrogant jerk (don't ya love it when some says a line of that type right before they do what they say they're not going to?) but I do a weekly track workout that started off at the low end (when I'm out of shape) doing 2 800's followed by 3 400's with 2 minutes rest in between. At the beginning of a season when my conditioning is poor Im doing em at about an 8-8.5 minute mile pace. I guarantee they don't have these guys doing these 300 yard shuttles anywhere close to that fast, no way those tubs could physically do it.

2 minutes in between is a long time in terms that runners identify with, 5 minutes is a freakin eternity even if they make you do a 3rd one which sorry guys but I have to absolutely laugh at. If he had long enough to walk to the bathroom and recover then the 1st one doesn't even count. If he couldn't cut it then yea he is a fat ass that's wayyyy out of shape.

Sorry to be brutal but if they can't do that without having a heart attack then they are in pretty bad shape. Not a knock to most of society who doesn't get payed millions to be "athletes", most people are in pretty lousy shape, but there's no excuse for a pro athlete of ANY type to be so grossly unconditioned.
I don't understand the point of view that Shanahan is acting petulant - this is football, the ultimate team sport, and Haynesworth was not part of the team until yesterday. Now he is being punished. WD is totally right - if we jerked around in practice, or slacked off, etc., our coach ran us into the ground. Punishing slackers or malcontents is nothing new in football, not sure why its a big deal now.
Al just has to kiss the ring of Don Shanahan.

Who may well know what he's doing, but, I've always thought he was a dick.

And who, just like Al, needs to help win something, here, with this franchise, before I'll be impressed.
folks seem to be missing that Shanahan/Haslet have been playing bad cop/good cop - at least as reported in the media. they'll have to be careful with this one.
also....it's easy to get lost in football cliches. not all players are equal.....the cost of exerting one's will is different in each situation. not saying that Coach's will shouldn't be exercised...only that Coach better include the potential costs. it's one thing to lord it over some special teamer who sees the field 4-5 times a game...another a 2 time pro bowler. there are also some other qualifiers:

- Shanahan stated he spoke with Haynesworth the day he arrived and that the conversation was positive...now this public display of "making a point"?

- Haynesworth may or may not be in football shape - there are, afterall, other BIG guys in the league who would do no better - but he obviously DID SOMETHING to prepare himself. His decision process may have been flawed, but he wasn't sittin back plowing down burgers and sleeping 'til 1500 every day either. there is a middle ground here and Shanahan needs to find it.

This is starting to follow a plot line suggested in the press a few mos ago that the core problem was money: the Skins will work to make conditions intolerable for Haynesworth and hopefully force him to seek a trade under less favorable conditions. This seems self-defeating to me. While our defensive line lloks good from a distance - it is manned by older guys, or guys coming off serious injury, or younger folks with very sporadic performance (e.g., carricker). A motivated, team oriented Haynesworth would be a mjor plus. Both parties need to reset the scales and work to a mutually beneficial solution. If it is a power struggle...the Skins will win on the roster, lose in the money department and lose in the locker room. these sorts of conflicts eventually always move into the locker room.

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