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 up for a mandatory minicamp.
But it’s important to remember that Haynesworth isn’t exactly beating up on a singing-impaired choir boy. Coach Mike Shanahan has, in our estimation, taken a few liberties with reality when it comes to the Haynesworth situation, and we’re now beginning to believe that Shanahan intentionally gave Haynesworth a conditioning test that Shanahan knew he would fail.
Per a league source (and forgive me if someone else has reported this, but power is out at our undisclosed beach location and I’m trying to conserve the battery in my laptop and my Sprint mobile hot spot, which is performing incredibly well during an intense barrage of lightning), Haynesworth completed the assigned pair of 300-yard shuttle runs, but Shanahan then decided that he had too much rest between the two attempts, due to a bathroom break.
The source says that Shanahan told Haynesworth that he “needed to get in shape.” Haynesworth then said that he couldn’t have completed three 300-yard shuttle runs even in his Pro Bowl/All-Pro years.
Said Shanahan in response, “I guess you have never been in shape then.” (It’s unknown whether Shanahan then said, “Boom. Roasted.”)
It’s currently our understanding that Haynesworth was the only lineman required to pass the conditioning test. Though some may contend that those who participated in the offseason program earned an exemption, it’s our understanding that the test is imposed to ensure that the player is ready to withstand the rigors of training camp. Just because the rest of the players participated in the offseason program, which concluded more than a month ago, doesn’t mean they’re still in shape. So all of them should have to pass it, or none of them should be expected to try.