The Washington Redskins experiment with Albert Haynesworth should be over now. Haynesworth is known as one of the dirtiest players in the NFL and has also grown a reputation as one of the laziest players, but he will get another shot somewhere in 2011. Haynesworth was one of the premier defensive tackle in the NFL, not too long ago.
The team that will be willing to sign Fat Albert, will need four characteristics:
- One that isn’t afraid to take on players with a troubled past.
- A defensive line coach that can earn his respect and is hard nose enough to keep him in line.
- A 4-3 defense scheme.
- A team that believes adding Haynesworth will be enough to get them a championship.
The Eagles signed one of the most scrutinized players in Mike Vick. That’s worked out pretty well for them so far and it could help them to not shy away from Haynesworth’s trouble past.
Jim Washburn is considered by many including myself as the best defensive line coach in the NFL. Washburn also was the defensive line coach in Tennessee for Haynesworth’s complete tenure there. Haynesworth contributes his success to Washburn and the two are still very close.
The Eagles will run a 4-3 scheme like the one that Haynesworth achieved great success in Tennessee.
Philadelphia is on the cusp of a Super Bowl. Eagles’ coach, Andy Reid has gotten so close and he has to feel his window closing in on him. If he believes that adding Haynesworth to his roster will push this team over the edge, he won’t hesitate.
Two of those points, I want to elaborate on. How close are the Eagles? How good is Jim Washburn?
My Projected 2011 Eagles Roster
QB: Mike Vick
RB: Lesean McCoy / Dion Lewis
WR: Desean Jackson
WR: Jeremy Maclin / Riley Cooper
WR: Sinorce Moss / Jeremy Williams
TE: Brent Celek
OT: Jason Peters / Winston Justice
OG: Danny Watkins / Todd Herremans
C: Mike McGlynn / Jamaal Jackson
DE: Trent Cole / Brandon Graham
DT: Albert Haynesworth / Mike Patterson or Trevor Laws
OLB: Moise Fokou / Rashad Jeanty
MLB: Jamar Chaney
CB: Asante Samuel / Trevard Lindley
FS: Marlin Jackson
SS: Jaiquawn Jarrett
That’s a solid roster, especially when you take into account that this isn’t even factoring in them resigning any of their own free agents or other teams free agents.
Jim Washburn Bio
The Eagles were 15th against the pass and 15th against the rush last season. Washburn helped lead the Titans to being 5th versus the run and 7th in sacks, over his 12 years as defensive line coach in Tennessee. Washburn coached up Jevon Kearse, to the point where he earned the nickname “The Freak.” Kearse was dynamic in Tennessee, then ironically Philadelphia overpaid for him, and he was a bust in an Eagles jersey. When he got back to playing under Washburn, you could see him regaining his old form, until injuries overtook him.
Jason Babin was a bust, until he got to Tennessee last season. After a season with Jim Washburn he was second in the NFL in sacks, as a defensive end, with 12.5. Only John Abraham had more sacks in 2010 as a defensive end, with 13. Don’t bet on a repeat performance from Babin in 2011, unless he signs with Philly too.
Albert Haynesworth became a $100 million athlete after Washburn molded him into a killing machine. Albert has never started 16 games in a season, yet he was able to record 14.5 sacks in back to back years under Washburn. Yes, these were both contract years, but that leads me to my next point. When Albert wants to prove his value, he comes out motivated.
Now that Haynesworth has all of the money he wants, the Eagles can get him for a value. They don’t have to sign him for a $100 million dollar contract. Albert wants to prove that he isn’t a bust and he would love to play for the man he calls “Wash” again. It’s worth the risk for a team that has never won the Super Bowl but has been so close for the last decade. It also wouldn’t hurt to set this man loose against a Mike Shanahan led offense, twice a year. Haynesworth plays his best in divisional games and that will help in one of the toughest divisions in football.
Matt Schaub was labeled injury prone. If you think about it, that was primarily because Haynesworth hurt him every year that they were in the same division. David Garrard and Peyton Manning weren’t too sad to see him go either. The same goes for the departure of Jim Washburn. AFC South quarterbacks are a lot safer for quarterbacks with the departure of Fat Albert and Wash. The Eagles can hope to see that same havoc brought to the NFC East with the two rejoining on the road to a championship.
Jayson Braddock is an NFL Scout / NFL Writer & On-Air Personality. Jayson is also a football insider for the Dylan Gwinn show on 790 AM in Houston, TX - Listeners NOT in the Houston metropolitan area can hear Jayson on iheart radio or sports790.com. You may email Jayson directly @ firstname.lastname@example.org or follow him on Twitter @JaysonBraddock