NEW ORLEANS -- Mike Shanahan declined to comment on the still uncertain futures of defensive tackle Albert Haynesworth and quarterback Donovan McNabb when asked about both players during Tuesday morning’s coaches breakfast at the NFL meetings in New Orleans.
“What I won’t do, is I won’t talk about players because I can’t talk to players, can’t talk to agents,” Shanahan said, referring to the restrictions imposed by the NFL lockout. “So I won’t talk about players that may be question marks in your mind. I won’t talk about the direction we’re going to go.”
When he last spoke to reporters – at the NFL combine Feb. 25 in Indianapolis – Shanahan said he didn’t yet know whether Haynesworth would be with the Redskins for a third season.
And the coach said then that he had met with McNabb’s agent, Fletcher Smith, about the quarterback’s status with the team, and that he expected an ultimate decision soon after the draft. At that time, Shanahan added, “Now he’ll have some time to digest what we talked about. We’ll get together. When it will be — two, three, four weeks — I can’t tell you for sure. But the conversation will be ongoing.”
Shanahan and general manager Bruce Allen had another two weeks before the lockout was imposed March 11 to discuss football business with players’ agents. But Tuesday morning, Shanahan wouldn’t say if any progress was made toward resolving either player’s future.
The Redskins are expected to attempt to trade McNabb, who struggled in his first year in Washington and was benched for the final three games of the season. But no player trades can take place until a new collective bargaining agreement is reached between the NFL’s owners and players.
Haynesworth endured a well-documented tumultuous season in 2010, with the root problem his unwillingness to play nose tackle in the 3-4 defense.
Haynesworth was suspended for the final four games of the regular season for conduct detrimental to the team, and since then has been the subject of two off-field incidents. He was involved in a road rage altercation on Feb. 4 in Reston and was charged with simple assault for allegedly striking a fellow driver as the man sat in his car at a traffic light. Nine days later, Haynesworth was accused of sexually assaulting a waitress at The W Hotel in the District. An investigation commenced, but Haynesworth wasn’t immediately charged. He is due to appear in court for the road rage incident on March 31.