Snyder acknowledged a different vibe and a cultural change now that he has appointed Bruce Allen as general manager and Mike Shanahan as head coach.
"It was necessary," Snyder said Saturday at the dedication of an inner city football field that has been refurbished by the Redskins and the NFL. "We were 4-12 and going in the wrong direction, and all the changes are to get us going in the right direction. Obviously with the pedigree and the success of the people that I've brought in, you can tell we're going in the right direction. I'm real excited about it."
In the last five months, Snyder has ousted longtime front office head Vinny Cerrato and fired coach Jim Zorn. The changes came with a price: The owner known for his hands-on approach has given Shanahan the final say over the roster.
Snyder downplayed the change in his role.
"I think the approach has always been a little more hands-off than probably written about or reported about," he said.
Snyder cited the leadership of Donovan McNabb and said "We'll be OK" when asked about the status of getting the new quarterback a contract extension. McNabb's current deal expires at the end of the year.
Haynesworth is another matter. The Redskins have paid the two-time All Pro $32 million in guaranteed money over the last 15 months, but he skipped two voluntary minicamps this spring and stayed away from all of the team's offseason workouts mainly because he's unhappy with the switch to a 3-4 defense.
"Yeah, I'm disappointed he's not here. Absolutely," Snyder said. "We're expecting our players to lead by example, and we're expecting our players to understand that they're Redskins and they need to be there."
Haynesworth is expected to attend the mandatory minicamp next month.
Copyright 2010 by The Associated Press