Thread: Around The NFL:
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Old 02-19-2009, 09:09 AM   #596
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Posted by Mike Florio on February 19, 2009, 11:34 a.m.

According to our friends at Pewter Report, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers are expected to be one of the teams to pursue free-agent defensive tackle Albert Haynesworth.

Word surfaced on Wednesday that Haynesworth, perhaps the biggest name on the market this year, won’t re-sign with the Tennessee Titans before testing the market.

All that said, we continue to have serious reservations about investing so much money into a player who was AWOL for most of the first five years of his career, with the glaring exception of the day that he tried to remove Andre Gurode’s face from his skull with a cleated shoe.

Factoring in recent allegations of a second high-speed driving incident – only four days after being placed on probation for the first one – and we think that the risk of a downturn in performance or an off-field problem, or both, is too high.

And as we told the fine folks (actually, we don’t know them all that well, so we shouldn’t assume that they’re fine) at ESPN Radio in Austin on Thursday morning, the team to watch in all of this is the Detroit Lions.

With plenty of cap space and a desperate need to do something/anything to create some offseason excitement, the Lions should be one of the major players for Haynesworth. The fact that former Titans defensive coordinator Jim Schwartz is the new head coach in Detroit makes such a move even more no-brainer for a franchise that has grown all too accustomed to operating without a brain.

Here’s the key – if despite the connection to Schwartz and the obvious need to create positive buzz and improve the team the Lions don’t make a play for Haynesworth, any other team out there should be even more concerned about plunking down so much money at a time when there’s no guarantee that the guy that the Titans saw for the first five years of his career won’t resurface once the bonus check clears.

If Haynesworth is worth the money he wants, the Titans or Schwartz will give it to him. If they don’t, it’s all the more reason for others to be tread lightly.
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