Feud goes into overtime

Albert Haynesworth vs. Mike Shanahan. This one’s going into overtime. The conflict between two strong wills — the unyielding coach and the player with the US$100 million contract — escalated this weekend when Haynesworth expressed defiant frustration at being repeatedly singled out by the coach. Shanahan responded by saying things aren’t going to change.

The feud between Washington Redskin Albert Hayneworth and coach Mike Shanahan continues.

The feud between Washington Redskin Albert Hayneworth and coach Mike Shanahan continues.

WASHINGTON — Albert Haynesworth vs. Mike Shanahan. This one’s going into overtime.

The conflict between two strong wills — the unyielding coach and the player with the US$100 million contract — escalated this weekend when Haynesworth expressed defiant frustration at being repeatedly singled out by the coach. Shanahan responded by saying things aren’t going to change.

Haynesworth fired first, breaking a week of silence after Saturday night’s 23-3 loss to the Baltimore Ravens. The two-time all-pro defensive lineman essentially accused Shanahan of mischaracterizing the reason Haynesworth couldn’t practice last week. Haynesworth suggested Shanahan did it to make the Redskins organization “look good” and to make him “look bad” because he didn’t participate in the off-season conditioning program.

Shanahan last week gave a variety of reasons why Haynesworth didn’t practice for 2 1/2 days, eventually chalking it up to “more of a headache than anything else.” Haynesworth said Shanahan “left out a whole lot of stuff” but didn’t say what. Multiple reports said Sunday that Haynesworth was suffering from rhabdomyolysis, a muscular condition whose symptoms included weakened, stiff or aching muscles.

The Redskins had previously said Shanahan would not discuss the matter until today. He was not made available to local reporters Sunday, but he talked about Haynesworth in an interview with AOL Fanhouse.

Asked about the reports that Haynesworth has rhabdomyolysis, Shanahan said: “Not aware of that.”

Shanahan went on to reiterate a point he has made before: Haynesworth has to practice if he wants to play.

“Albert has gotten away in the past with playing without practicing,” Shanahan said. “That will not happen under this regime. If he’s going to play, he’s going to practice, and that is the same with every player here.”

Haynesworth has been a thorn in Shanahan’s side since the coach took the Redskins job in January. Haynesworth drew Shanahan’s ire by staying away from the off-season program and later lobbied for a trade because he didn’t want to play nose tackle in the team’s new 3-4 defence.

Haynesworth also skipped a mandatory mini-camp and was fined. When he showed up for training camp, he was made to pass a conditioning test before he could practice.