In his recent criticism of Head Coach Mike Shanahan over his handling of Albert Haynesworth, LaVar Arrington pointed out that a coach must come into a new situation with a plan, communicate that plan, and execute it. He didn’t claim Shanahan didn’t have a plan, but did seem to infer that he either didn’t or did not have a good enough one.
Of all the legitimate criticisms one might level against Mike Shanahan directly or via inference, failing to plan isn’t remotely among them. He hasn’t succeeded by not being deliberate or thoughtful enough. And clearly, he has succeeded. In fact, Coach Shanahan reportedly spent all of last year planning. Now, he did recently admit that he had never encountered a situation like the Albert Haynesworth ordeal before. But, that does not in any way reflect on the depth and breath of his planning.
Based on Shanahan’s recent comments, Albert Haynesworth’s stay in Ashburn, VA is over. So, the question is, what now? What’s the plan Shanny? What’s the grand design you have for rebuilding the Redskins and restoring them to a place of respectability? Who will you salvage from this year’s squad? What positions will you ‘upgrade’ via trade, free agent signings, and the draft? Which positions are highest on your list? Who will the new Tight Ends Coach be? Will you retain all of the other assistant coaches on your staff or will you replace one or more of them? Are you going to stick with the 3-4 defensive scheme? What’s the fate of Hunter Smith and Graham Gano? What’s Clinton Portis’ future?
Obviously, there are a lot of questions Mike Shanahan must answer, either verbally or by actions, to restore hope in the hearts of Redskins’ faithful. Why he handled Albert Haynesworth the way he did is no longer one of them.