Patrick Chung: No better way to prepare for the regular season than by facing Tom Brady
|08.02.12 at 5:32 pm ET|
‘Going against him will definitely make you better. Hands down. You guys know it. Everybody knows it. We just have to keep stringing [good practices] along,’ Chung said after Thursday’s practice, one where the defense appeared to get the better of the offense on several occasions. ‘Just keep stringing them along and keep getting better. [Brady is] going to make us better. Our offense will make us better.’
Chung and the rest of the New England defense had a good day on Thursday, disrupting Brady’s rhythm on several occasions and even forcing a pick when safety Steve Gregory came away with an errant Brady pass. It’s all part of an effort to develop the consistency and continuity that is often found in the most successful secondaries.
‘Consistency is No. 1,’ Chung said. ‘You have to be able to make plays consistently: boom, boom, boom, boom. It can’t just be good play, bad play, good play, bad play. Being consistent is No. 1 on the back end, because if you mess up on the back end, it’s a touchdown. We have to be on the same page and everybody has to know what they’re doing to make it happen.’
While the offense is considered to be among the league’s elite, questions remain about the state of the defense. The 5-foot-11, 210-pound Chung, who is heading into his fourth season with the Patriots, says that when it comes to the defensive backs, they pay their critics no mind.
‘We don’t pay attention to it. We haven’t even played a game yet. We’re just going to play ball, play to the best of our abilities and then we’ll see what happens after that,’ Chung said. ‘[Criticism goes] in one ear and out the other. That’s how we like it back there. People are going to say what they want to say — everybody has their opinions. It’s in one ear and out the other. Get better, play ball and go from there.’
The Patriots added several new faces in the secondary this season, both in the draft (Tavon Wilson, Nate Ebner) and in free agency (Gregory, Will Allen, Marquice Cole).
‘It’s good to have a lot of guys out there, because better competition will only make the group better,’ Chung said. ‘It will only make the group more competitive. It’s going to get us better. I like the bunch of guys we have in that room. A bunch of athletes who can play ball.’