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Albert Haynesworth Says The Giants Wanted Him:

I came across this today from Bob Glauber of Newsday:

The Redskins’ morning practice in blistering temperatures and high humidity has just ended, and Albert Haynesworth walks off the field. The sweat is pouring down his head as he carries his helmet. Yet the conditions do nothing to wipe away his smile.

At 28, and only six months after signing a seven-year, $100-million contract, life is good. Very good. It’ll take more than stifling heat to ruin his sense of contentment. Not even the pressure of having to live up to the richest contract ever given to a defensive player is weighing him down.

“The only pressure I feel is the pressure I put on myself,” Haynesworth said. “The dollar amount doesn’t have anything to do with what I do on the field.”

The 6-6, 340-pound Haynesworth was clearly the most coveted defensive player on the open market, and the Redskins came out the big winners after a brief yet frantic bidding war. Just hours into free agency, the Redskins beat out the Bucs and Giants for the impact tackle.

Once the Giants realized the bidding would get into the stratosphere of nine figures, they quickly dropped out. But Haynesworth admits he was intrigued by their interest. The Giants wound up signing free-agent defensive linemen Chris Canty and Rocky Bernard.

“I was shocked they wanted me,” Haynesworth said of the Giants. “I didn’t know how that would fly.”

Haynesworth wasn’t quite certain how he’d mesh with Tom Coughlin. After all, when Haynesworth came into the draft in 2002, he was strongly considered by Coughlin when he was coaching Jacksonville. A phone call from Coughlin the day before the draft left Haynesworth somewhat confused.

“I spent three or four hours on the phone with him the day before the draft,” Haynesworth said. “He kept asking me these questions that didn’t quite make sense to me. He’s like, ‘OK, if I ask you to do something and you know it’s the wrong thing to do, what are you going to do?’ So I’m like, ‘Well, I’ll do the right thing.’ And he said, ‘No, do what I say.’ We kind of clashed at the time. I said, ‘Yeah, I don’t need to go to Jacksonville.’ ”

Haynesworth is aware Coughlin has mellowed over the years. “I heard he has loosened up a lot more and heard that he’s a player’s coach,” Haynesworth said, “and that’s great for him.”

But Haynesworth is perfectly content playing for Jim Zorn, who said the former Titan has been a pleasure to coach.

“Really good, on and off the field,” Zorn said. “When he goes to work, he works hard. You had better come to practice, because he’s going to practice hard. He’s never loped.”

Haynesworth’s arrival, coupled with those of first-round pass rusher Brian Orakpo and free-agent cornerback DeAngelo Hall, will improve an already sound defense. Haynesworth is the best interior defender in the game, and his presence alone will improve a defense that ranked fourth last season.

And if Jason Campbell turns into a more consistent quarterback, the Redskins could be right in the thick of an ultracompetitive NFC East race.

“I think we’ve got the potential,” Haynesworth said. “We’ve got all the pieces of the puzzle to be great. It’s a matter of how fast we come along and how we put this thing together.”

People are not giving the Redskins enough credit heading into this season. The Giants will find out in their regular- season opener just how good the Redskins can be. Especially with the new man in the middle, the guy the Giants once hoped would be on their side.

I for one am glad the Giants passed on Haynesworth.  They signed three free agents for the price of one.  Who will be laughing when the Giants are contending for the Super Bowl and Haynesworth is watching from the couch.

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One Response to “Albert Haynesworth Says The Giants Wanted Him:”

  1. JERSEY says:

    Haynesworth is physically talented but not mentally.

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