Former Tennessee Titans Pro Bowl defensive lineman Albert Haynesworth has been out of the NFL for a couple years. That didn’t prevent a former Washington Redskins teammate, Chris Cooley, from commenting on Haynesworth’s play after he received his seven-year, $100-million contract from Redskins owner Daniel Snyder. It’s often regarded as the worst free-agent signing in league history.
This conversation started when Cooley was asked which contract was the worst between Haynesworth and Gilbert Arenas, who received a six-year, $111-million contract from the Washington Wizards back in 2008. Here was part of Cooley’s comments:
That’s obvious when you’re around a player, that they’re not trying to play for your team…It doesn’t matter what you got [in exchange for Haynesworth]. They would have released him if they wouldn’t have got anything for him. It wasn’t about getting a pick out of him. It was about a terrible decision to bring in an awful human being into an organization that he’s not going to participate in. You should know that. You should be aware of that.
Cooley goes into all the fraudulent practices that Haynesworth used to try to secure his guaranteed money ($41 million), get released, then receive another contract from a different organization. The entire article and all of Cooley’s comments are available at the Washington Post article that’s in the ‘sources’ section at the bottom.
Here’s an interesting note to consider: According to Haynesworth, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers had originally offered him more money than Washington. Supposedly, Haynesworth chose Washington so he wouldn’t get distracted from everything in Florida.
Titans enthusiasts should remember Haynesworth as a top-tier defensive tackle who represented the franchise from 2002-08. The Titans drafted him out of the University of Tennessee with the 15th pick in the 2002 NFL Draft. He wasn’t known as a fraud as much as a vicious man who occasionally attacked his own teammates, not to mention opposing players.
Two majors incidents come to mind. In 2003, Haynesworth kicked former teammate and center Justin Hartwig in his chest. In 2006, Haynesworth deliberately stomped on former Dallas Cowboys center Andre Gurode‘s forehead. His cleat created a wound that required 30 stitches. Haynesworth narrowly missed puncturing Gurode’s right eye with his cleat. He received a lenient five-game suspension.
All of that excludes multiple legal issues that stem from alleged violence, impregnation and failed loan payments.
For the Titans, it’s a good thing they never re-signed him. Contract extensions should go toward trustworthy players such as Jason McCourty and Alterraun Verner. Haynesworth was just one of numerous players who gave this franchise a bad image. Kenny Britt gets himself into ignorant and immature situations, however, he has never gotten himself into the public relations fiascoes that Adam “Pacman” Jones and Haynesworth did.
It’s a shame because Haynesworth could’ve been an all-time great. Money got the best of him. It ruined his football career. Who knows how it’ll impact the rest of his post-playing days. Last August, NESN wrote an article about how he planned to open a burger establishment near the UT campus.
Does Haynesworth get a bad rap? According to him, people come after him because he’s a success:
SOURCES: Washington Post