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Albert Haynesworth is capable of being the most dominant defensive force in the NFL. In his last two years, he has racked up 14.5 sacks—and that was while being double- and triple-teamed constantly. But, his attitude and motivation have really been questioned in the past two years.
The Haynesworth era in Washington appears to be over. All Dan Snyder has to show for it is 6.5 sacks, a four-game suspension and constant bickering and whining—another great free agent pickup to add to his already stellar resume.
But, in Synder's defense, he did take the best 4-3 defensive tackle and put him in a defense in which he was uncomfortable.
All of the drama between Shanahan and Haynesworth appears to be working in the Eagles' favor this offseason. The best 4-3 defensive tackle in the game will be available at a bargain price. But why would he go to Philadelphia, a team that already has plenty of depth at the position with Mike Patterson, Broderick Bunkley, Antonio Dixon and Trevor Laws?
Jim Washburn, that's why. Jim Washburn is the legendary defensive line coach, formerly of the Tennessee Titans—Haynesworth's old team. Washburn is now the defensive line coach of the Philadelphia Eagles.
Washburn got the most out of Haynesworth in Tennessee. Haynesworth had 24 sacks for the Titans, including 14.5 in his final two seasons. He added to that 91 tackles, seven passes knocked down and three forced fumbles, despite being double- and triple-teamed on just about every play.
In 2008, Haynesworth finished the year with 8.5 sacks, but even that isn't the most impressive number. It's what he opened up for his linemates—35.5 sacks for the rest of the team. The Titans went 13-3 that season, and Haynesworth was a big reason why.
I believe Haynesworth would get his mojo back playing in a scheme he is used to and for a coach he has excelled with.
Sources within the Eagles told Yahoo! Sports that Washburn would like to team up with Albert again: "He wants him badly."
Haynesworth has also stated he wants to play for Washburn again, telling The Nashville Tennessean: "I owe Coach Wash pretty much everything," Haynesworth said. "If my deal was worth 100 million or whatever, then Washburn deserves 90 million."
Sounds to me that Haynesworth and the Philadelphia Eagles would be a perfect match. Would he take a pay cut? Well, honestly, he probably doesn't have a choice.
No one is going to match that $100 million offer he got from the Redskins in 2009. First of all, Washington has to release him. The Redskins have no need for him and his contract is untradeable based on his recent performance.
His projected contract would be similar to Burress' contract, pretty incentive-based but somewhere around $5 million a year, with plenty of performance bonuses.
This is pretty much the same deal as with Burress. Eagles don't necessarily need him, but there is motivation for Haynesworth to come to Philly at a bargain price.
It would certainly make them a much better team.