BOSTON — Leon Washington is feeling right at home in New England.
Washington ended up in Foxboro from Seattle by way of New York — Jets, that is — this offseason, and he’s expected to be the Patriots’ primary return man entering the 2013 season. So, while he’s still new to the area and the Patriots’ unique way of doing things, Washington is already feeling comfortable in his new digs.
“Do I feel like I’m a Patriot? I would say so,” Washington said during a NFL Play 60 event at the Roger Clap Innovation School in Dorchester on Wednesday. “Like I said, the guys have been welcoming. The coaching staff, from the guys in the weight room to you know running into people in the meal room. Everybody has been real welcoming.”
The Patriots do things a little differently than other teams and tend to look for more than pure talent in their players. Washington understands that, and, while he won’t compare the Patriots to any of his previous stops on the NFL trail, he is ecstatic about the opportunity.
“I want to stay away from comparisons,” Washington said. “But when you think about the New England Patriots and what they’ve done in the past and the type of program and the type of organization this is, it’s been a blessing to be a part of it.”
Washington, 30, is expected to be the veteran in the running backs room this year, filling the role Danny Woodhead left behind. But, even a seven-year veteran and special-teams superstar like Washington knows nothing is guaranteed in the NFL.
“So you know, it’s not over yet. We’ve got training camp and we’ve got a long offseason,” Washington added. “I’m still working toward to try to make this team. That’s why I came here, to try and help us try to win football games.”
Washington was a winner last season in Seattle and has been for much of his career. The Patriots’ organization is obviously built on a winning foundation, and, while it may not earn him an automatic roster spot, there’s no doubting that Washington’s past will go a long way in winning Bill Belichick over.