The Washington Redskins have a open active roster spot to be used on a player who will better fit their long-term plans, after defensive lineman Albert Haynesworth was suspended without pay by the Redskins on Tuesday for the last four games of the season, the Redskins said the move was made because of "conduct detrimental to the club." The four-game suspension without pay is the the maximum permitted under the collective bargaining agreement and will cost Haynesworth $847,000 (the pro-rated portion of his $3.6 million 2010 salary), if it stands. According to coach Mike Shanahan: "When Albert was at Redskin Park on Monday, he told our General Manager Bruce Allen that he would no longer speak with me. The Redskins said General Manager Bruce Allen told Haynesworth about the suspension Tuesday. Albert Haynesworth's agent Chad Speck issued a statement saying the accusations made by Coach Shanahan and Bruce Allen are vague and without merit and the suspension will certainly be appealed.
Haynesworth will not be allowed at Redskins Park for practices or meetings for the final four weeks of the season. Many will ask what took the Redskins so long to make this move considering Haynesworth, skipped off-season workouts, boycotted a mandatory mini-camp, needed 10 days to pass a conditioning test at training camp and as Shanahan put it "repeatedly refused to cooperate with our coaching staff in a variety of ways over an extended period of time." Had the Redskins made this move any sooner, they would have been forced to let Haynesworth return to the locker room after sitting out four games, or release him. Now they can move pass the “$100 million defensive lineman” until the end of the season.
The Albert Haynesworth saga is about to move from Mike Shanahan's area of operation and into Bruce Allen's area of responsibility. Haynesworth and Speck will file a appeal that will take more than a month to reach a conclusion meaning there is zero chance of Haynesworth playing again this year. If Haynesworth gets anything out of the appeals process it will be money, the provision of the CBA limiting suspensions to four weeks states that its limits apply to “any deactivation of a player in response to player conduct other than a deactivation in response to a players on-field playing ability. Any deactivation even one with pay, if done for disciplinary reasons, counts against the maximum four weeks of discipline. Sunday's deactivation may have been for disciplinary reasons and might net Haynesworth one game check.
The Redskins re-structured that much talked about $21 million bonus so that the entire amount would be charged to 2010, which is an uncapped year and the structure of the deal may put either the entire bonus amount or $17.5 million of it subject to forfeiture by Haynesworth. The CBA has language in it that says that the player can forfeit bonus if the "player willfully takes action that has effect of substantially undermining his ability to fully participate and contribute.", in his statement regarding the Haynesworth's decision head coach Mike Shanahan said that Haynesworth "has consistently indicated to our defensive coaches that he refuses to play in our base defense or on first-down or second-down nickel situations. He has also refused to follow the instructions of our coaches both during weekly practices and during actual games as well."
If Haynesworth losses his appeal of the four game suspension look for Bruce Allen to go after a large chunk of that $21 million bonus that Albert Haynesworth received in April.