During the brief time that Chris Cooley and Albert Haynesworth were Redskins teammates, Cooley says he figured Haynesworth out: He has a natural talent for football, but he doesn’t like it very much.
That’s what Cooley told 106.7 The Fan’s Chad Dukes (via Dan Steinberg of the Washington Post) in an interview in which Cooley said he actually has nothing against Haynesworth, other than the fact that it’s kind of hard to be a teammate of someone who has the ability to be a great player but chooses not to be.
“The thing that I would think about Albert, the way his last three years have played out, is that he hates football,” Cooley said. “I’m not criticizing his character or his work or anything. My only assumption in this — and it’s just an opinion — is that he does not like football, by what I’ve seen over the last three years. If he loved the game of football, he’d show up and love it.”
There’s probably a lot of truth to what Cooley is saying, and it’s probably more common than fans who do love football would like to think: When you’re huge, athletic person like Haynesworth, you’re going to be pushed into football as a child whether you enjoy it or not, and you’re going to keep playing because it can make you rich whether you enjoy it or not, and eventually the fact that you don’t enjoy it is going to become apparent.
Haynesworth obviously didn’t enjoy playing for Mike Shanahan. And Shanahan enjoyed coaching Haynesworth even less.