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Morning Commute: Believing In Albert Haynesworth

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The Redskins' training camp begins this week, and the obvious big story (no pun intended) involves Albert Haynesworth. Will he show up in shape? Will he act like a professional and do what the coaching staff asks of him? How will he defend his actions this winter? How will Mike Shanahan and the rest of the coaching staff treat him?

In light of all that, I have a bold prediction: Haynesworth is going to surprise everyone during training camp. He'll be everything we hope he should be and more. He'll be in shape, he'll fulfill his duties in the Redskins' new defense and a lot of what happened this winter will blow over.

I know, I know - this always happens around this time of year. We talk ourselves into believing in this team and its players, only to be disappointed. But while I cannot support Haynesworth's actions this winter, I think he will finally come to terms with his new role in the Redskins' defense. We take this for granted, but the decision to switch to a 3-4 is a pretty drastic shift that many players probably did not understand right away. As Rich Campbell detailed so nicely today, there was some opposition to the decision, because the defense was hardly the biggest issue with the team last season. Shanahan appeared to win over most of the players right away, but it's not surprising to think that there were some people slower to come to terms with the change. People like Albert Haynesworth. 

But as more and more time has elapsed, it's become clearer that the 3-4 is here to stay. It often takes time for anyone to come to terms with a drastic change in their workplace, and Haynesworth clearly needed some time to digest it all. Now that he's had that time, I'm hopeful that he's gone through every stage of his reaction to the decision and has reached the acceptance stage. He's reportedly in great shape, which is the first step toward acceptance. Here's hoping this year's training camp is the second.

Today's must-reads from around the SB Nation network:


  • Testudo Times has a complete recap of Day 1 of the ACC football media day. 
  • Federal Baseball recaps the latest Adam Dunn trade rumors.
  • Casual Hoya brings us another report from the Kenner Summer League. 
  • JaVale McGee didn't play much in the Team USA scrimmage on Saturday night, but did enough to impress Bullets Forever.
On tap at SB Nation D.C.: We have three really good features up already. First, Scott Jackson, who is on scene at the ACC's media day in Greensboro, discusses how the ACC is still looking for that breakout season and predicts that the league will finally get its dream Florida State-Miami championship game. We also have a guest feature from Patrick Reddington of Federal Baseball examining whether the Nationals should do more to honor their past as the Montreal Expos. Finally, B.J. Pierson recaps the slow week that was in this week's Talking Points.

SB Nation D.C. will also be live from the Verizon Center today as the Wizards formally introduce newcomer Kirk Hinrich.