I hope the news of Albert Haynesworth's four-game suspension (the rest of the season) didn't catch you completely by surprise. Now, it will be interesting to see if the NFL Players Association files a grievance on Haynesworth's behalf because he won't be receiving money during his time off.
Coach Mike Shanahan probably should've done this earlier in the season, but he and defensive coordinator Jim Haslett tried to get some production out of the former All-Pro defensive tackle. In the end, the situation simply became too embarrassing to ignore. Shanahan said in a statement Tuesday that Haynesworth "repeatedly refused to cooperate with our coaching staff in a variety of ways over an extended period of time."
Shanahan also added that Haynesworth "consistently indicated" to defensive coaches that he wouldn't play in certain packages and that he didn't follow instructions in practice and games. Basically, it sounds like Haynesworth was begging to be released. Now, we'll wait to hear his response to the Redskins' decision. I'm not sure whether he'll go on the radio again or visit with a beat reporter over the phone.
But I think the Skins may have Haynesworth's attention now that they've stopped payment on his salary. He has made a nuisance of himself since the offseason, and Shanahan hasn't made it better by feeling the need to show him up at times. But for this team to actually think about playing a football game, Haynesworth needed to be banished from the facility.
I wrote this morning that it was time to suspend Haynesworth. It's obvious that Shanahan wanted to try to teach the player one more lesson before cutting ties forever.
Haynesworth will never wear a Redskins uniform again, and I'm pretty sure his teammates and coaches are just fine with that outcome.