Daniels: 'He's got to be here'
The Mike Shanahan era has begun at Redskins Park and Washington's players are buying in -- except for $100 million defensive tackle Albert Haynesworth, who again was a no-show for the team's second voluntary minicamp this weekend.
And some of his teammates aren't happy about it. Haynesworth is upset about the team's looming change to a 3-4 defense under new defensive coordinator Jim Haslett from the 4-3 that the team used in 2009.
It says this is voluntary, but for us, what we went through last season after a 4-12 season, it's mandatory.” -- Phillip Daniels, on the Redskins' recent minicamp, to The Washington Post
"There is no room for negotiation at 4-12," defensive end Phillip Daniels told The Washington Post, making reference to the team's record in 2009. "I'm here, [London] Fletcher's here, everybody's here," Daniels added. "He's got to understand that. We need him to come here, be here and show these young guys that the veterans have bought in and that we want to win games."
Haynesworth, a two-time All-Pro defensive tackle, would prefer to be traded. He has also irked Shanahan by working with his own trainer and staying away from all of the team's voluntary offseason conditioning sessions.
Haynesworth, who has been paid $32 million of the $41 million guaranteed in the contract he signed with the Redskins last year, stayed away from the first minicamp last month in hopes the team would trade him, possibly for draft picks. However, on the second day of the NFL draft, Shanahan announced that "Haynesworth will not be traded."
Haynesworth's first year with Washington was far from harmonious. He criticized Greg Blache, the team's defensive coordinator last season, after being sent home from a practice for disciplinary reasons. He played in 12 of 16 games and recorded 37 tackles and four sacks.
Daniels told the Post that he's been told that Haynesworth will be allowed to play on the end and won't have to be the team's starting nose tackle, which is an important although unglamorous line position in the 3-4.
"From what I'm told, he can play the end spot," Daniels told the Post. "I've called him and told him that. The thing is, we have 100 percent participation if he is here. It's now 99. He's got to be here."
However, in April, a team source told ESPN NFL Insider Adam Schefter that Haynesworth was penciled in to be the team's starting nose tackle.
Offensive lineman Mike Williams said that, like it or not, Haynesworth has to realize he's a leader on the team.
"Albert carries so much weight with him, there's a lot of young guys that look up to him," Williams told the Post. "But you got to be here. ... He's a grown man. With that comes responsibility. I think a lot of people say, 'Hey, you have a responsibility to this team.' There are a lot of other guys here that would like to be home. But obviously not, because there is a responsibility we have to this team."
Daniels told the Post that although these minicamps have been voluntary, the Redskins' last-place finish last season dictates that attendance should be mandatory.
"It says this is voluntary, but for us, what we went through last season after a 4-12 season, it's mandatory," Daniels said. "He should definitely be here. And it's a shame he's not."
Haynesworth will be required to attend the mandatory minicamp next month.
Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.
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