For all the dismissal of the St. Louis Rams signing Plaxico Burress and other aging receivers, I am more than a little reluctant to pen a post talking about Washington Redskins DT Albert Haynesworth. Dan Snyder's $100 million man is in the news plenty lately as speculation builds around whether or not Washington will cut, trade or keep him once the lockout ends.
The latest news, out of Philly, says that Mike Shanahan will not cut him. Instead, they'll seek a trade in an effort to get some return on their investment. Good luck with that. Haynesworth has a monster contract, given the personality risk and his recent play (which may or may not be better than it seemed and somewhat lost in the transition to a 3-4).
Haynesworth is signed through 2015, but the next three years of his contract are particularly expensive. This year, he's due a salary of $5.4 million. That number goes up to $6.7 million with a half million dollar workout bonus next year. His contract gets really problematic in 2013, when it includes a "poison pill" worth $29 million, an $8.5 million base salary and a $20 million "discretionary signing bonus" plus another half million dollar roster bonus.
Haynesworth's base salary this year is guaranteed, meaning that any team acquiring him through a trade would be on the hook for that. An new team could work out a new deal, incentive-laden, upon acquiring Haynesworth. The risk of Fat Albert being a huge pain in the neck will weigh heavily on any interested team...and drive down the trade cost, maybe to as low as a seventh-round pick. The Rams have a recent history of trading with the Redskins, shipping Adam Carriker there for draft pick swap.
It's a move that could pay off under the right circumstances, but before eating up salary cap space, teams will want to have a clear idea about whether or not he can be controlled.