Yet his absence from the Patriots practice field has been just as noticeable.
Haynesworth wasn’t present Saturday during New England’s fifth practice of training camp, although it was only the first session since the team officially announced his acquisition Friday night. Head coach Bill Belichick said Haynesworth can begin practicing “when he’s ready” and isn’t subject to the NFL’s quirky rules that keep certain players off the field until Aug. 4.
So where is he?
“He’s not quite ready to practice yet,” Belichick said.
It’s certainly fair to question whether or not Haynesworth has passed his conditioning run, which proved to be his downfall in Washington. Belichick was asked directly if Haynesworth still has to pass the test.
“There are things that we still need to do with Albert for him to be able to get on the practice field,” Belichick responded. “When those things are done, he’ll be out there.”
It’s also fair to give Belichick the benefit of the doubt in this situation. Haynesworth would have had to pass a physical for the completion of the trade, so the Patriots wouldn’t have finalized the transaction if they believed they were acquiring physically damaged goods. Therefore, Haynesworth should be expected to practice in a reasonable amount of time.