Albert Haynesworth a Slave? Why the Washington Redskins Need To Let Him Go

Mihir Bhagat@mihirbhagatSenior Analyst IIISeptember 26, 2010

GLENDALE, AZ - SEPTEMBER 02:  Defensive tackle Albert Haynesworth #92 of the Washington Redskins stands on the sidelines during preseason NFL game against the Arizona Cardinals at the University of Phoenix Stadium on September 2, 2010 in Glendale, Arizona.  The Cardinals defeated the Redskins 20-10.  (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)
Christian Petersen/Getty Images

According to reports, Washington Redskins defensive tackle Albert Haynesworth said that his $100 million contract shouldn't make him a slave. 

Haynesworth has clearly expressed his opposition to playing a different position in the Redskins newly implemented 3-4 defensive scheme.

The Redskins told him that he would be their nose tackle, which in contrary to its undeniable importance is noted as a position that rarely registers big-number stats. 

"Just because somebody pay you the money don't mean they'll make you do whatever they want or whatever," Haynesworth stated in an interview with 106.7 The Fan. 

Haynesworth signed a seven-year deal via free agency last year, and after performing at a sub-par level, I refer to him as the $100 million mistake.

Despite receiving a $21 million bonus in April, the two-time All-Pro did not participate in organized team activities such as conditioning programs and mandatory minicamps this offseason. 

Potential trades have been discussed, but nothing imminent has emerged. Lately, both sides simply seem to be widening their already troubling gap. 

Even though Haynesworth continues to receive the big bucks, I believe it's clear that Mike Shanahan and the Redskins organization have the control over the issue.

"Yeah, I signed the contract and got paid a lot of money, but that doesn't mean I'm for sale or a slave."

Honestly, my first reaction was that this is no more than yet another episode of his ongoing antics. 

Also realize that after ultimately being a non-factor in the first two games (he was injured last week against the Texans due to a sprained ankle), the Redskins rank dead last in total yards allowed.

In his defense, Haynesworth signed the deal with the notion that he would play defensive tackle in a 4-3 system. Had he been told otherwise, I'm certain he would have chose from one of his other several options. 

Still, there's no legitimate excuse as to why he shouldn't behave as an employee should and simply do his job. 

That said, I think the solution to the tiring saga is apparent, and that parting ways is the best route for either side.

For the most part, Haynesworth has lost the respect of the Redskins franchise and fanbase. He's carried himself in an unacceptable and unprofessional manner, and has demonstrated few glimpses of passion or desire to change his ways.

At the same time, since he's an undeniable talent when healthy and motivated, a mere change of scenery may just be the spark he needs to ignite his play. 

On the flip side, the Redskins simply need to eliminate this lingering distraction and move forward with the promising players they have.

They are headed in the right direction, and have surprised many with their relatively impressive performance in the first two weeks. 

With head coach Mike Shanahan at the helm, and Donovan McNabb behind center, this is a possible playoff club in the making. 

Regardless of what type of value (or lack thereof) they can receive for Haynesworth, they need to swallow their pride and make a critical decision.

Whether they trade him or outright release him, I believe that letting him go is truly the only move to make. 

Of course, I wish both parties the best of luck moving forward.

Information from an ESPN news report was used in this article.