Friday, August 6, 2010
Shanahan: This is not a circus!
By Dan Graziano
ASHBURN, Va. -- If you ever want to break up a pleasant conversation with Redskins head coach Mike Shanahan, just start pressing him on the Albert Haynesworth situation. That's what did the trick for me Friday evening. And by now you may have heard that Haynesworth will attempt to pass Shanahan's infamous conditioning test Saturday morning, according to ESPN's Adam Schefter.
While sitting in Shanahan's office admiring his sophisticated video equipment, I asked him if he regretted how this whole conditioning test had become somewhat of a "circus." Needless to say, the coach didn't like that particular word.
"There has been no circus here at all," Shanahan told me. "Our guys are coming here and getting down to business."
Earlier in the week, Shanahan made a statement to reporters indicating there was a chance he might eventually allow Haynesworth to participate in practice even if he did not pass the test. But he clarified his position on that point.
"There a chance I could win the lottery," said Shanahan. "But it's very, very unlikely."
So at some point Saturday morning, Haynesworth will try to complete two 300-yard shuttle runs, thus ending one of the most durable story lines of camp. And I don't blame Shanahan for being sick of the topic, although he could have made it go away by now.
The good news is that I asked a few questions on your behalf before we got around to Haynesworth. Johnaldrichl wanted me to ask Shanahan what it would be like working with his son, Kyle. He wanted to know how that dynamic would play out.
Shanahan: It's been very enjoyable so far and Kyle's very good at what he does. I'm not any tougher on him than I am on my other coaches. He's already had success in the league as an offensive coordinator, so I think that helps in this process. But it's something that is certainly rewarding.
A reader named aberlickij wanted me to ask Donovan McNabb how many years he'd ideally like on his new contract.
McNabb: The three quarterbacks going into the final year of their contracts are Tom Brady, Peyton Manning and me. That's pretty good company. I'm really not worried about it. If we do what I think we're capable of doing, things will take care of themselves.
Received an email from DDunsworth wondering why Shanahan was so excited to trade for McNabb.
Shanahan: I coached Steve Young and John Elway and they could make plays when nothing was there. They could make plays with their legs and their arms. It's rare you have a chance to get a special player like that, and we had to do it.
You can read a lot more about Shanahan and McNabb in my upcoming Redskins Camp Confidential. Thanks for all your questions. I asked at least four of them on your behalf during my visits with Shanahan and McNabb.