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NFL Rumors: Nick Fairley The Next Haynesworth?

New York Post reports that some NFL teams are “privately comparing” Auburn DT Nick Fairley to the troubled Redskins DT Albert Haynesworth which is not a favorable comparison to have leading up to the NFL Draft.

“You’ve got to tread lightly with him because, as good as he looks on film, he could be a one-year wonder,” said one AFC GM. “It’s not like Suh, who dominated for a couple of years and you had no doubts whatsoever about.”

The fact that teams are concerned about Fairley shouldn’t come as a surprise but the fact that some view him as a possible bust should have a negative impact on his draft stock. Early on it seemed like Fairley was a top-three player but he has slowly been falling down teams boards in recent weeks. Teams appear to be concerned about him taking plays off something that Haynesworth showed last season.

Despite the concern, Fairley has shown that he has an amazing skill set at a position that’s normally inhabited by players that possess size and strength rather than agility. It would still be a shock if he’s not taken in the top-ten.

  • Acsdak

    I agree with the Albert Haynesworth comparison. I also think that connection could be greater as Fairly would be a wonderful fit for the Titans, if they decide to take a pass on a passer in the first round. He would occupy the roll formally filled by Albert and would go a long way in bringing Tennessee’s defense back to where it was a few years ago.
    Speaking of Albert Haynesworth, what uniform do you see him wearing next year? I can’t imagine him being back with the Skins after the drama that he caused last year, especially after his recent case of “road rage”. I still see Albert as being a game changer, provided he is in the right situation. I think that he needs to be on a 4-3 team with strong veteran leadership to keep him in line. But what contending team that fills that mold takes a shot on a potential locker room distraction? If a team is out there, who are a few of them that you think could take a hard look at Albert? In terms of draft picks what would it cost to get Hayneworth, road rage and all?

    • NFL Trade Rumors

      Great stuff here.

      I can see the comparison to Haynesworth but the things that are concerning about Fairley are the things that he possesses that other don’t. Is it really a benefit to have a more agile defensive tackle or would you rather a solid player like Marcell Dareus in the middle of your line? I think that this question has impacted multiples teams draft boards and attributed to Dareus’s rise.

      One thing thing that stood out to me the most regarding the Titans offseason, was the loss of defensive line coach Jim Washburn. Reading about his importance to the teams defense really makes you wonder how much of an impact did he have on the defensive lines success. Players have already said that they would consider leaving for Philadelphia, just to play under him again.

      This ties into Haynesworth because his best seasons came under the direction of Washburn which makes Philly the most logical destination if Haynesworth becomes available. The Redskins were unwilling to part with Haynesworth for a fourth-round pick but I’m sure that his value has dipped below even that much. Washington is more likely to cut him than they are to trade him but then again the Redskins aren’t a team that relies on logic as much as their “gut feelings.” So it wouldn’t be shocking to see them refuse to let him go.

      One other possibility that I wouldn’t rule out at this point is the Detroit Lions. Jim Schwartz was the Titans defensive coach while Haynesworth was still in town and if anyone other Jim Washburn can get him to play up to his abilities, it could be Schwartz. Haynesworth main issue with the Redskins was that they moved to a 3-4 requiring him to play the five-technique tackle position. Both Philly and Detroit would allow him to return to the position that he’s most comfortable in.

      Sorry for the long response.

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