Everyone saying the right things about Haynesworth in Tampa

There will be a host of skeptics who believe Albert Haynesworth can turn around his career after being the biggest free-agent bust in the history of the NFL with the Washington Redskins.

A brief stay with the New England Patriots did nothing to reshape opinions. Haynesworth is now with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and he’s doing what he can to fit in with his new team. Give him credit, right now everyone is saying all the right things.

Ira Kaufman of the Tampa Tribune dubbed it Haynesworth’s “redemption tour.”

"I wouldn't say it did anything for my confidence because I know what kind of player I was,'' Haynesworth said. "When I looked at the film, I saw things I've got to improve on, but playing in this system is almost like getting back to what I did at Tennessee.''

Haynesworth has the physical ability. He has a knee that needs maintenance but when he wants to – and when he plays with proper technique – he can be a disruptive force in the middle of any defense.

Young teammates are praising him already, and it’s not like he’s been known as much of a mentor, not lately anyway.

"Albert's a great guy, almost like a coach around here,'' rookie defensive end Da'Quan Bowers said. "He comes and tells me little things in my ear to try to make me a better player. Everyone seems to think he has a negative attitude, but I haven't seen it.''

We’ll see if Haynesworth can keep it up. The Bucs are in a no-risk situation. If he plays well for them, maybe they consider doing something with him for 2012. We’ll see.

"I definitely hope to be here next year,'' he said. "Hopefully, they'll want me back. Going to Green Bay is going to be a great test to pass rush, get up the field and hopefully get Aaron Rodgers rattled. I'm looking forward to Sunday and Lambeau's an unbelievable place to play.''

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Brad Biggs covers the Bears for the Chicago Tribune

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