Can you say “trimming the fat”?
First the Redskins unload Donovan McNabb, who despite being a world class human being was a world class bust last year, and now they have finally unloaded one Mr. Albert Hayneswoth-less.
Haynesworth adds another veteran presence to the defensive line; the Patriots did not select a D-lineman in the 2011 draft.
The Patriots have nose tackle Vince Wilforkreturning at nose tackle in their 3-4 defense, and he’s the team’s best lineman. Nine-year veteran Ty Warren, who missed 2010 with a hip injury, has been the team’s longtime starter at left defensive end. The expectation was that he would be back at that spot in 2011, if he returned to full health.
So the big question is at right defensive end in the 3-4, and that’s where the 6-foot-6, 335-pound Haynesworth could be utilized by coach Bill Belichick. The Patriots also run plenty of multiple fronts, featuring a four-man line, and Haynesworth could be part of that mix as well, helping with an interior pass rush (also in subpackages, where the Patriots particularly need a boost).
Haynesworth was at his best when playing in the 4-3 scheme with the Titans, and seemed to prefer that over the Redskins’ 3-4, so it will be interesting to see how he adapts to the way the Patriots utilize him.
With Wilfork, Warren, Haynesworth, Marcus Stroud and six-year veteran Mike Wright, the Patriots have five veteran players complementing some younger options such as Myron Pryor (third year),Ron Brace (third year) and Brandon Deaderick (second year).
Not all figure to make the final roster, so how things shake out will be one of camp’s big storylines.