• September 29, 2022

A Focused And Motivated Haynesworth Could Make The Eagles Defense Dominant

I know Albert Haynesworth is immature and hard to coach, but nobody can question that he’s capable of dominating an offensive line like few defensive linemen in the NFL.  He can be a monster, an unblockable monster.

I remember playing beside Reggie White and Jerome Brown.  They freed up everybody else to make plays because they had to be double-teamed.  It put pressure on the offense and forced them into mistakes and turnovers.  Teams weren’t able to run or pass without the risk of a turnover.

Haynesworth has ability to create the same type of dominating presence.  Adding a focused and motivated Haynesworth to our defensive line could enhance our defense immediately.  You would have to double team him on running and passing plays, which would free up our linebackers.  Despite double-teams Haynesworth can still get into the offensive backfield.

I don’t care whether Haynesworth does interviews or whether he can complete an endurance test in training camp.  I just want him to give me 50 plays per game.

A number of years ago we invested two first round draft picks and one second round draft pick in defensive tackles, Mike Patterson, Brodrick Bunkley and Trevor Laws, but I have yet to see one of them become a dominating presence on our defensive line.  You can’t be effective playing a 4-3 defense unless your defensive linemen play like “BEASTS”.

You can mix things up more in a 3-4 because you have more speed on the field with four linebackers rather than four defensive linemen.  If you play a 4-3 it’s because you believe your defensive linemen will be tougher to block and therefore create pass rush pressure on the quarterback and improve your pass coverage because of the pass rush pressure.

If your defensive linemen aren’t difference makers, the 4-3 makes no sense.  That’s why it’s a must to get dominating players upfront.  It’s also the reason why having a failed special teams coach like Rory Segrest coaching your defensive line is so foolish, especially when you invest most of your draft in acquiring defensive line talent.

Back to Haynesworth, the Big Fella had his best years in Tennessee playing for new Eagles defensive line coach Jim Washburn.   Washburn was able to get him focused on creating havoc in the offensive backfield of the opposing teams rather than in the locker room of his own squad.

“Fat Albert” lined up in the three-technique defensive tackle position and dominated.  You can’t run the football or throw the football with a 6’6″ 350 pound defensive tackle standing in the middle of your backfield.  Haynesworth destroyed everything in his way as the Titans dominated the AFC in the regular season and had a 13-3 record with Kerry Collins as their starting quarterback.

The key to the Titans success was their defense and the most important part of that defense was their defensive line.  Washburn gave Haynesworth the freedom to be a big bully and that’s exactly what he was.  He pushed people around and abused offensive linemen.

Even this year with the Redskins, there were times when he just singled handedly pushed blockers into the face of the quarterback. If you look closely at the some of the pictures I have attached to this article, you will see Haynesworth pushing around 320-pound offensive linemen.

Our defensive tackles have never been dominant.

The Tennessean newspaper

“I owe Coach Wash pretty much everything. If my deal was $100 million or whatever, then Washburn deserves $90 million,” Haynesworth told the Tennessean.  “I have the talent, but he taught me how to let it loose. As a player, once you can get through the (colorful language), get down to the core of what he is saying, the information is more valuable than gold. He’s a great coach, a great teacher. The Titans should have paid a lot of money to keep him from leaving.”

Is that an endorsement or what?  Haynesworth also talked about how Washburn put a foot in his butt in his rookie year to get him to produce. The big defensive tackle knows what the Titans rookie defensive linemen are saying.

“I guarantee you some of them are saying to themselves, ‘Gosh, I’m glad that (expletive) is gone.’ Because I felt the same way when I was a young guy with him,” Haynesworth said. “My rookie year he was on my butt, cussing me out. I couldn’t even look up and see sunshine, he was on me so much.”

When Haynesworth signed with the Washington Redskins he left Washburn.  He had a decent year in D.C. in 2009 but in 2010 things didn’t workout for him with new Redskins coach Mike Shanahan and his 3-4 defense.  He isn’t a nose tackle and shouldn’t be used as a nose tackle.

If a player dominates the league at a certain position why would you want to change his position.  I agree that Haynesworth should have agreed to play the nose tackle position because he was under contract but it’s a stupid move by Shanahan and the Skins to change his position when nobody can block him in the 4-3 at defensive tackle.

You’re doing the offense a favor by putting him at the nose tackle position.  I would like to the Eagles to look into bringing Haynesworth to town.  He would be making a salary in the $5 to $6 million dollars per year range.

The biggest thing going against the Eagles signing Haynesworth is his age.  He’s getting ready to turn 30 and that’s probably why he won’t be coming to Philadelphia.

Could you imagine Haynesworth and Reid grabbing a bite to eat together after practice?  They could keep an entire restaurant tied up for hours.  You don’t get that big and stay that big without eating a lot of food every day.

GCOBB

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SONGSRME2
SONGSRME2
January 20, 2011 8:01 am

“G” you’re right on…..Haynesworth will even make our linebackers look respectable. I hope this is the Eagles thinking. Another opportunity to get a special player for a bargain price.

vricchini
vricchini
January 20, 2011 8:22 am

Makes sense for the eagles to sign him. We have a habit of picking up injury prone or washed up players that a team does not want anymore why not? Our defense would fit around his style of play and he would love to face the redskins twice a year. Also he would be reunited with his old LB coach. Sign him to a no risk contract. Its a low risk high reward type deal for the birds

Beijingjake
Beijingjake
January 20, 2011 8:27 am

Birds would be playing with fire financially by bring the dude in, but after watching people run all over the Birds last year, it’s probably worth the gamble. But signing him would just be the first domino in the line. Other change would have to be done to make sure that a cancer would not fester. For instance I worry about Cole (who made less than $4M last year) being miffed if someone potentially making multiples of his salary starts pulling the stuff that he did in DC. If you Haynesworth to play for $5M, and adjust Cole’s salary upwards, perhaps it would work.

Cant Climb
Cant Climb
January 20, 2011 8:41 am

Sure Haynesworth is at least a little immature but in think he go tore apart by the media unfairly. Redskins organization is a train wreck and Shanahan is Mr. Ego who hasn’t done a darn thing since Elway ad TD left….

Beijingjake
Beijingjake
January 20, 2011 8:44 am

G – a question for you. If the guy playing next to you was making 2x what you were, yet not giving it all on every play, how would you have reacted (at the time, when you were in your late 20’s…)?

ozzman
ozzman
January 20, 2011 9:05 am

I cant believe the Hysteria over a defensive line coach. In my opinion i think this was a great hire, its not going to put us over hump for a Super Bowl. There are so much more we need to do . I am really hating talking about FA, trades and the draft the week of championship Sunday.

Beijingjake
Beijingjake
January 20, 2011 9:11 am

G – good analogy, thanks for insight. Mr. White at least to me, seemed like someone that could never create a cancer on any team. I hope Haynesworth would approach his demeanor if the Birds bring him in. I think this team is a player, or two and a few less injuries away from being something that would be hard to touch. Probably worth the gamble.

vricchini
vricchini
January 20, 2011 9:11 am

Ozzman did you really think we were going to go to the superbowl? cmon man not with this defense.

paulman
paulman
January 20, 2011 9:17 am

Would anyone want to see a Trade with the Redskins again

QB Kolb for DT Hayesworth straight up…

I think we all agree that McNabb will be released and move on from the Redskins, does anyone think Shannahan is going to build a winner around QB Rex Grossman.

Interesting..

vricchini
vricchini
January 20, 2011 9:19 am

Perfect off season. Sign asumugha, Sign Hanyesworth, Let Desean Jackson walk and sign Vincent Jackson, Tag Vick, Tell Akers its been fun and good luck finding a new team, Trade Kolb for #1 pick draft 2 Offensive linemen in the 1st round, Hire Eric Mangini as of DC.

vricchini
vricchini
January 20, 2011 9:21 am

if we trade for him wouldnt we have to pick up that contract?

paulman
paulman
January 20, 2011 9:23 am

If this were to happen, then DT Patterson or Bunkley could be traded to maybe get a 3rd or a 4th
Rd pick in return.. (the Panthers with new DC McDErmott probably wouldn’t mind having a DT
who is familiar with his system down in Carolina where they have a big need for quality DT’s…)

greenfan
greenfan
January 20, 2011 9:23 am

Is he healthy?

Would the ‘skins trade him within the division, and what would it take in a trade to get him?

Would the Eagles be ok with taking on that huge contract?

From a football standpoint, provided he is healthy, it is a good move. I believe he would be rejuvinated playing with his former coach. He is certainly better than any of our D-tackles currently on the roster.

btc24
btc24
January 20, 2011 9:25 am

Amen ozzman.

paulman
paulman
January 20, 2011 9:25 am

To Vricchini,
Hayensworth has already collected just about all of the Bonus $$ from his Contract over the last 2 years from the Redskins (1st when he originally signed and then last year with another big Roster Bonus)
Eagles would be left with his yearly Salary..

greenfan
greenfan
January 20, 2011 9:25 am

@ozz- I am with you. I hate that we are not still playing.

dawkplex1221
dawkplex1221
January 20, 2011 9:45 am

Haynesworth, dixon and cole………oh my

EAGLE Co 32
EAGLE Co 32
January 20, 2011 9:46 am

WHY NOT GIVE MANGINI A CALL?

navyeaglefan
navyeaglefan
January 20, 2011 9:53 am

you had me at 13-3 with Kerry Collins as the QB

Stevo
Stevo
January 20, 2011 9:55 am

Ozzman- this is a HUGE hire because we upgraded on many levels. We upgraded from a guy who didn’t deserve the role to a guy who is one of the best. But even more than that… We upgraded ideas. We have been small and pushed around on D for YEARS… That’s going to change now!!

vricchini
vricchini
January 20, 2011 10:07 am

eagle co 32 thkats what im thinking… paulman says its cause hes italian.. ha

runtheball09
runtheball09
January 20, 2011 10:11 am

You guys are out of your minds. I saw all I needed to see out of Haynesworth when he laid on the ground like a slug. Him and Shawn Andrews should go buy and island and change each others diapers. Two big babies. Why is everyone hating on our DLINE? I seriously don’t understand all the hate on the DLINE. We’ve got bigger issues than the DLINE. Our secondary is garbage, our linebackers suck, and we’ve got two corners that can’t tackle for shit.

scorpiodsu
scorpiodsu
January 20, 2011 10:16 am

Stevo, that isn’t going to change if the players don’t change. I agree with you that’s it a very good hire but he can’t change the size of the players. He can teach them and they have to perform. So until we either get some talented players or these players start performing then right now, it’s just wait and see. You can’t teach heart. Hopefully these guys take it personally that their d line coach was fired. When the coach gets fired that means the players weren’t play good enough and any player should take that personally. But who knows with Bunk and Patt. We’ve been waiting a while for them to wake up. But they should be better. How much to TBD.

vricchini
vricchini
January 20, 2011 10:17 am

thats

scorpiodsu
scorpiodsu
January 20, 2011 10:20 am

On defense, release Bunkley, find a way to get Haynesworth and Asomugha. Defense instantly upgraded with those 2. You now have a bunch of studs/playmakers with them and Cole and Samuel.

On offense, trade Kolb and use that pick to get the best LB on the board. Draft O-line. Either tag or extend Vick. Not worried about Jackson. He can wait for his when he stops disappearing in games.

RealTalk777
RealTalk777
January 20, 2011 10:21 am

you dont understand the hate on the DLINE? The DLINE has not gotten consistent pressure on QB’s, especially when they are only bring the front four! not being able to get pressure on the QB, makes the secondary’s job a hell of lot harder…you try staying with WR’s in the NFL for 5 plus seconds each down and see how you would be impacted. It starts up front!

scorpiodsu
scorpiodsu
January 20, 2011 10:23 am

runtheball the Dline is only good for the 1st part of the season. They don’t get any penetration and no QB pressure. They wear down and get run on at the end of the year. I agree with you about the secondary but you can help that by having a better D line. I haven’t seen Trent Cole since week 9. The LBs actually don’t suck when removing Ernie Sims from the lineup. I think going in with Fokou, Chaney and Bradley as the starters that’s a serviceable group. Not outstanding but could be solid. The top 2 priorities on defense should be the line and secondary. It starts in the trenches.

scorpiodsu
scorpiodsu
January 20, 2011 10:26 am

Lastly, you cannot take what someone did on another team and automatically apply to what they will do on another team. Especially if it means playing for a guy that Haynesworth loves and has so much respect for and basically said his entire career success belongs to that guy. You probably were one of those guys that didn’t care about TO blowing up at his offensive coordinator in San Fran because this is San Fran. None of us has no idea what Haynesworth would do on THIS team. This isn’t washington and the sideshow down there. Try reading G’s article about how players can play bad in one situation and then great in another.

runtheball09
runtheball09
January 20, 2011 10:30 am

First of all the play calling sucked. Our DLINE is what it is because of Reid. Why the hell did he draft Trevor Laws? He doesn’t even fit in. Plus he could have moved up and drafted Ngata. We’ve got midgets on the ends and nothing behind the damn plugs. Our friggin LB’s consistently suck! Plus stupid Marty won’t run the ball and rest the defense, so our Defense was always on the field. Marty’s play calling looks like a friggin madden game. If its not a 56 yard pass, he don’t want it.

scorpiodsu
scorpiodsu
January 20, 2011 10:31 am

Real, exactly. No CB in this league can stay with NFL WRs for a long time when the D line doesn’t get pressure. Sure some CBs can do it longer than others but it’s still difficult. It starts in the trenches. You upgrade the DLINE it helps your LBs. They won’t have to shed blocks from Olineman and they can blitz more effectively. They can clean up on run plays will your DLINE is occupying the OLINE. If your DLINE gets pushed around the LBs will get pushed around. Ray Lewis best years were with Siragusa and worst years were after Sirugusa retired. It helps your CBs because the penetration and QB pressure forces QB to throw the ball earlier than they like and your CB don’t have to chase WRs for a long time. It starts in the trenches. With both of your lines are playing well the entire team will play well. Period.

scorpiodsu
scorpiodsu
January 20, 2011 10:32 am

Run, I fully agree. So now you are pointing out how bad the Dline is with Laws, not getting ngata and midget DEs and yet you say why is everyone hating on the Dline? Seriously?

runtheball09
runtheball09
January 20, 2011 10:41 am

No, I’m saying why is everyone hating on Bunkley and Patterson aka the DLINE. I’m saying we’ve got bigger issues than bunk and patt. I never said the DLINE was good, I said whats with all the hating? Haynesworth isn’t the answer to our problems. I don’t want another divisive big baby on this team. I think bunk and patt are fine. I’m just saying you guys are acting like this is the answer to our problems. I disagree, I think we’ve got bigger issues than replacing two big fat turds with two big fat turds. Its the biggest no brainer job in the game.

paulman
paulman
January 20, 2011 10:44 am

To Scorp,
Bunkley and Patterson are still under contract and are still young enough to return a mid-level draft pick in return (a 4th Rounder) or at least could be used to maybe move up in the Draft so it makes no sense in releasing either of them since they have some value..
Example – Trade Bunkley and 5th or a 6th Rounder to the Panthers for their 3rd (which is the 65th overall pick) or any other teams in need of DT’s (Broncos,Seahawks,Texans,Bills,Panthers can all use upgrades across their D/Lines)

Stevo
Stevo
January 20, 2011 10:57 am

Vri- let djack walk? Let akers go? Gosh this is stupid on so many levels.

scorpiodsu
scorpiodsu
January 20, 2011 10:59 am

paulman, I know they are still under contract. Get rid of Bunk by any means necessary. I’d keep Patterson for depth.

scorpiodsu
scorpiodsu
January 20, 2011 11:03 am

run, bunk got benched. How is he fine? You are missing the point. You upgrade your dline it automatically improves other areas of your defensive. And again, stop worrying about what Haynesworth did in Washington. Divisive? What did he do in Washington that was divisive? Did he resist Shanny? Yes. But Look at what Shanny did to McNabb and we know McNabb is the most passive aggressive player ever. So stop it please. IT STARTS IN THE TRENCHES. Why the hell do you think we went and hired another dline coach? BECAUSE IT STARTS IN THE TRENCHES. You have to upgrade there or you’ll be just like all the previous years. No pass rush and can’t stop the run in the playoffs. Even with Sheldon and Asante playing at a high level, we were still in trouble BECAUSE THE DLINE WAS CRAP. IT STARTS IN THE TRENCHES.

btc24
btc24
January 20, 2011 11:24 am

Eagles would be foolish to let Akers go. Do you guys ever watch other games and see how many big kicks their team misses in critical situations. I think we all take Akers for granted and have a bad taste in our mouths from the Packers game. He’s typically automatic. Finding a solid kicker is extremely hard to do.

navyeaglefan
navyeaglefan
January 20, 2011 11:28 am

hey – before we leap off the deep end – just saw a story on Philly.com that references some data from footballoutsiders.com, and the analysis goes against most of the comments coming off the board. The gist of the statistical analysis was that in fact teams attacked Philly by running OUTSIDE – that teams ran wide against Philly more then any other team in the league – that does not translate to poor D Tackle play, that translates to teams thinking our DTs and MLB are strengths (not talking pass rush here). So you have emotional ranting against cold/unemotional statistical facts. Teams did not attack the Eagles between the tackles – they went outside…. The follow on indicates that either teams thought they could fool the ends into coming inside, or that they thought they could attack our OLBs (Paulman – you and I have had post discussions about how tight the OLBs play in this D) –

Now follow on – the Eagles biggest issue in the passing game was………. covering Running backs. Statistical data indicates the Eagles actually did a good job against WRs, it was running backs that killed them…….

So lets see after these juicy tidbits……… Outside runs and pass covering RBs………. If the QB can always check down to an open RB……….. Some issues covering TEs……………… wait for it…………… wait for it………………. wait for it…………… could it be that the problem with the defense this year wasn’t the D Line (The DLine was Crao, it starts in the trenches, trade patterson and bunkley, how bad the Dline is with Laws etc. etc.) but instead our OLBs? Why would anyone test Bunkley or Dixon or Laws so the can be (insert 3 cliches about ‘game changers’ here) when you can just go outside – accordning to a season long statistical study – that’s what opposing teams O Coordinators did.

Not saying looking to upgrade ANY position is a bad thing, but apparently other teams O Coaches game planned away from our interior D Dline and MLB.

EagleBeliever
EagleBeliever
January 20, 2011 11:58 am

Passes to the RB did kill us all year. I believe people stopped running up the middle because of Dixon & Bradley/Chaney. All three are pretty solid against the run. It only makes sense to take the ball outside and attack a DE or OLB.

Samuel doesn’t get enough credit for what he does for this defense.

And the redzone problems can only get better….a lot better I think next year.

EagleBeliever
EagleBeliever
January 20, 2011 11:59 am

Honestly I think Patterson/Dixon will be good as our DT’s. But if you have the opportunity to get a guy like Haynesworth…you can’t pass it up.

Then you snag an OLB and a CB someway somehow

Beijingjake
Beijingjake
January 20, 2011 12:05 pm

Agree with you GREY that OLB is a big weakness on this time. As G has stated (in a more politically correct form) Sims can’t spell his own name. I think he is a major, major hole.

tydm
tydm
January 20, 2011 12:41 pm

Can someone explain to me why he can be a beast in a 4-3 but not in a 3-4. i know NT is sometimes a “gap” position but why can’t he go after qb everytime?

tydm
tydm
January 20, 2011 12:48 pm

i seen alot of 3-4 D like Steelers, Ravens, Pats.i understood why OL hate to play them. OL said the 2 or 3 LBs show blitz and it is so nerveracking cause they don’t know if 1,2, or all 3 will be coming. OL said that gave NT and other DL in 3-4 a great advantage. that why it puzzles me why Haynesworth flourish in it

BladeRunner
BladeRunner
January 20, 2011 1:00 pm

Risky move right there but the Eagles are in trouble of becoming known as the weak sister in the City with the Phillies and Flyers at the top of their leagues with great coaches.

Lurie, Banner, and Reid may be willing to make this move if they can get assurance from Washburn that he can manage Haynesworth and get him to play at his All Pro level.

paulman
paulman
January 20, 2011 1:02 pm

Great points NavyDave..
The results of big rushing yardage to the outside is just another example of how deficient the
smaller DE’s have been (Cole,PArker,Tapp,Graham) and also the weakness of the OLB’s are in
run defense and in particular OLB E Sims
Dave,I bet if you/they broke down the numbers, the Eagles Defense gave up most of their yardage
around the left side as teams ran at DE T Cole and OLB Sims with consistent success…
T Cole, I have stated for 2 years, would be more of a productive player and pass rusger if he only played
on passing downs/situations. I bet hw would put up the same or even more Sacks if he played 30-35 Snaps a game as opposed to the 50-60 snaps a game he does now, he just wears down and takes a sharp angle to rush the QB on every play, then he loses containment and creates a gaping hole around the left side for a RB to run thru.. IUt’s been they way since he’s been a full time DE..
Go back and think of old Cowboys/49ers great DE/Pass Rusher CHarles Haley.. His job was to come in on passing situations and get to the QB.. He played part-time and had more sacks then when he did play full time earlier in his career, because he was fresh all game and when he was on the field, all he had to worry about was getting to the QB.. I think Cole would be more productive if he has a similar role and has never proven to me to be an top level player at the DE position

EagleBeliever
EagleBeliever
January 20, 2011 1:02 pm

The NT in a 3-4 is responsible for both gaps and taking pressure away from the middle. He often gets double-teamed and takes a pounding all game. He isn’t there to get sacks or rush the QB. He is there to open the gaps up so the LB’s can rush the lanes. You need a special player who has experience playing the NT position to get the kind of penetration, gap coverage and understanding of which way to direct the pressure of an O-Line.

A good NT has to have just the right size, leverage, and upper body strength to take on two blockers while playing low to the ground.

To take a 4-3 guy like Haynesworth who is meant to rush the QB and disrupt the backfield…it’s hard to break him out of that and force him to play a 3-4 NT position. He would be no where near as productive, and that’s kind of wasting the talent he possess. Prob why he didn’t want to do it.

SONGSRME2
SONGSRME2
January 20, 2011 1:10 pm

Hell with the 3-4….bring on Haynesworth and Asomugha and this same defense will be a beast with the players in place.

EagleBeliever
EagleBeliever
January 20, 2011 1:12 pm

I agree songs….i was just responding to tydm above

scorpiodsu
scorpiodsu
January 20, 2011 1:14 pm

Anyone can’t play NT. That’s a different kind of beast that plays that position. With Haynesworth, I much rather stay a 4-3. In my opinion, regardless of whether you play the 3-4 or 4-3 if you don’t have the players it doesn’t matter. In the last decade only 3 Super Bowl teams ran a 3-4 defense. Patriots, Steelers and Ravens. One of them, the Ravens played both base defenses at time. Sure they had great defenses but was it exclusively because of the 3-4? No. They all had great players and coaches. The players make the defense. I know the 3-4 is getting popular and that’s because coaches who are assistants of a 3-4 coach get a coordinator gig and start their own 3-4 but at the end of the day it doesn’t matter if you don’t have the talent.