Regarding Albert Haynesworth, does Mike Shanahan want to be happy or right?

The Washington Redskins lose to the Baltimore Ravens, 23-3, in a preseason game at FedEx Field.
By Mike Wise
Washington Post Staff Writer
Sunday, August 22, 2010; 1:17 AM

In sports and life, most stalemates end when one person finally confronts a key question: Do they want to be happy or right?

In regard to No. 92, Mike Shanahan can't be both.

It's no longer possible after Mount Albert finally blew late Saturday night, spewing lava, expressing utter contempt for every insulting hoop that he believes the Redskins and My-Way Mike have made a disgruntled two-time Pro Bowl defensive lineman jump through-- all because the big lug had the gall to miss offseason workouts with the team.

Albert Haynesworth is ticked his coach is making him play with the second team in the third quarter of a meaningless preseason game. He is tired of being portrayed as some mentally and physically soft player by the coach, who mouths the words, "Albert said he had a headache," like a frustrated spouse mocking a disinterested partner.

"They act like I had a headache," Haynesworth said, on his way to the team parking lot after the Ravens and Redskins game Saturday night. "It was a lot more than that. I got out of a hot tub. I was dizzy. I threw up."

Basically, Big Al is tired of being made so small by a team hellbent on making sure not even its most dominating player is held to a double standard.

"I guess to make themselves look good, make me look bad for not going to their offseason conditioning program," Haynesworth said when asked why the team didn't reveal more about his condition. "But, I mean, next year I'm not coming either. I'm going to be with my trainer again and I'll get back in the same shape I am and feel good about myself."

Boy, they sure taught Albert a lesson didn't they? He finally came around and realized who was boss, huh?

Again, does Shanahan want to be right or happy?

Unless he truly believes Haynesworth represents such a toxic combination of insubordination and distraction that the team would be better off without such a talent, the coach can't be both.

If Haynesworth truly hasn't earned his playing time or a position on the first team, don't play him at all after a couple of missed practices. Getting a guy game repetitions is one thing. But putting him among reserves - as possible punishment for being a malcontent - makes no sense for a guy who has missed significant time due to injury in his career.

Put him on the field with the players he's going to be playing with on opening night against Dallas.

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