Brandon Browner ‘enjoying every second’ as a member of the Patriots
|08.20.14 at 3:13 pm ET|
FOXBORO — Cornerback Brandon Browner has kept a low profile since joining the Patriots last March — but when he has spoken out — he’s had nothing but praise for his new organization.
“It’s a professional locker room, professional atmosphere. You never know what you’re getting into until you get there, but I’ve been enjoying every second of it,” Browner said.
The 30-year-old played three seasons in Seattle — including winning last year’s Super Bowl — before signing a three-year, $16.8 million dollar contract this past offseason. Coming from the famous Legion of Boom secondary with the Seahawks, Browner is enjoying his time with his new teammates in the Patriots secondary.
“I’m having fun,” Browner said. “We have a close-knit group with the safeties and corners. That’s a good thing to have — we all get along. There is a lot of talent back here. We’re just trying to build on practices a day at a time and get better than we were yesterday.”
Browner is suspended for the first four games of the season for violating the NFL’s drug policy, so the team will need to find someone to fill in at corner. But, with how versatile a number of the players in the secondary are — as well as having good depth — it shouldn’t be an issue.
“A lot of versatility, we have great backups as well,” said Browner. “We have a lot of depth here at the cornerback spot and our safeties have range — guys like Devin [McCourty], he has range over the top of us. We have good guys that can play man-to-man, but at the same time we’re far from we want to be. We want to be hitting on all cylinders closer to playoff time. We have to go out there and win Week 1, Week 2 – we can’t look too far ahead. Just build on each practice, one practice at a time.”
A major focus this season is obviously the new emphasis of illegal contact and defensive holding. McCourty talked at length on Tuesday about how important technique will be this season and Browner echoed him on Wednesday.
“That is the key to the game at the cornerback spot. They always say the game is a game of inches so you have to be technique-sound out there in order to make plays to not get beat and not get the penalties,” Browner said.
Browner, 6-foot-4, is known for being a physical cornerback, so there will undoubtedly be some adjustments to his game. He, like most other people in the game, are not huge fans of the increase in penalties, but knows he will need to adjust because at the end of the day a crucial penalty could play a major role at a critical point in the season.
“They said they would emphasize on the holding and the illegal contact down the field so it was something to prepare for,” Browner said. “Hopefully in the regular season they don’t call as many, but if they do we just have to take emphasis on getting our hands in the right place to reduce the penalties. Those things can cost you a big game somewhere in the season.”
For now though, Browner and the rest of the secondary aren’t looking too far ahead as their main focus is facing off against the Panthers Friday night in the third preseason game of the year.
“We’re making good progress, but there is still a lot to go,” he said. “We’ll take it a practice at a time.”