Albert Haynesworth did what the Redskins wanted: he showed up to training camp. He looked to be in good shape. And teammates claim his mind was in the right place.
And then he ran the conditioning test.
And then the saga continued.
Haynesworth failed coach Mike Shanahan's conditioning test before the first training camp practice and won't participate until he passes the test. He has to run two, 300-yard interval shuttle runs (50 yards at a time) in a specified amount of time -- with a short rest in between.
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Instead of practicing with his teammates, Haynesworth ran on a treadmill for 40 minutes. After the Redskins finished practicing, Haynesworth worked on the field with defensive coordinator Jim Haslett and defensive line coach Jacob Burney for about a half hour. Haynesworth, clearly trimmer than last season, declined comment. As he walked to the locker room, he was jeered by some fans and cheered by others. He waved to the fans and kept walking.
He will take the test once a day until he passes.
"Obviously we'd like him to be in the type of shape most of our players are in," Redskins coach Mike Shanahan said. "The bottom line is we'll get him in shape. ... It may take two or three days, it may take a week. His weight is fine, we just have to get his cardio at a certain level and make sure he doesn't injure himself. ... If he doesn't pass it, he'll get good cardio endurance on the treadmill."
Shanahan denied a report by Pro Football Talk that suggested harsh words were exchanged between the two after he told Haynesworth he failed. He reportedly took a bathroom break between his first and second 300-yard interval and, because he wasn't ready to run within a specified time, he had to start over.
"There were no words," Shanahan said. "Albert was first class all the way."
Haynesworth was the only player who had to take the test as the rest of the Redskins were excused because of their offseason attendance. Haynesworth, upset about the switch to a 3-4, did not work out in Ashburn and had hoped to be traded.
Shanahan said the other players all fared well in this run during offseason workouts.
"I don't think a lot of us guys who were here 100 percent could have passed that thing," corner DeAngelo Hall said. "But that's what conditioning test are; they're supposed to be somewhat unobtainable. The ones we've had in the past were definitely unobtainable. ... Some guys are made to do it and some guys aren't. He's doing everything he can to get back on the field."
Shanahan said, "It's a very fair test. More importantly, it keeps a guy from getting hurt. I don't want to put a guy out there that's not ready to go and all of a sudden there's a setback for two weeks."
Linebacker London Fletcher, a vocal critic of Haynesworth's this offseason, tried to avoid the topic during a post-practice interview, answering questions about the lineman by speaking in general about the team.
"You look forward to the next snap, the next moment," Fletcher said. "You don't concern yourself with the past."
Hall said it's not about Haynesworth trying to win over his teammates.
"He has to do what he needs to do to win games," Hall said. "The na?ve person in all of us wants everyone to be best friends. But sometimes that's just not how it is."