Featured Stories

Other Pamplin Media Group sites

Local Weather

Mostly Cloudy

54°F

Portland

Mostly Cloudy

Humidity: 90%

Wind: 3 mph

  • 28 Jan 2015

    Cloudy 57°F 44°F

  • 29 Jan 2015

    Partly Cloudy 50°F 39°F


Patrick Chung can't sing or dance

New England Patriots defensive back doesn't want to talk about Philly, either, but he still loves Eugene and is back in the groove with AFC champs


Photo Credit: COURTESY OF NEW ENGLAND PATRIOTS - Patrick Chung, former Oregon Ducks safety, will start on defense Sunday when the New England Patriots take on the Seattle Seahawks in Super Bowl XLIX at Glendale, Ariz.PHOENIX — The second time with the New England Patriots has been a charm not only for one Oregon Duck, but for two.

LeGarrette Blount's resurgence as a running back after a brief fling with the Pittsburgh Steelers is well-chronicled. Not as ballyhooed has been the triumphant return of safety Patrick Chung, who came back to the Patriots after a season in Philadelphia.

Chung will be in the starting lineup for Sunday's Super Bowl XLIX matchup with Seattle, intent on adding a championship ring to his arsenal.

"We're trying to finish this out," Chung said during Tuesday's media day session at US Airways Center. "I'm excited, but can't get too crazy. It's a huge game, but you prepare like it's a regular game. If we do everything we've been doing for 22, 23 weeks, we'll be all right."

The 5-11, 210-pound Rancho Cucamonga, Calif., native was a four-year starter for the Ducks from 2005-08, earning back-to-back first-team all-Pac-10 honors as a junior and senior. Chung and teammate Max Unger -- now the Seahawks' center -- hold the school record with 51 straight starts.

A second-round draft pick by New England in 2009, Chung started one game as a rookie, then settled in as a regular starter his next three seasons with the Patriots. He had six tackles in New England's 21-17 loss to the New York Giants in Super Bowl XLVI.

In March 2013, Chung signed with the Philadelphia Eagles and coach Chip Kelly, the offensive coordinator during Chung's final two seasons at Oregon.

Chung started in the 12 games he played with Philadelphia, but was hampered by a shoulder injury. Evidently, something else was not right. In March 2014, he was released by the Eagles and a month later, re-signed with the Patriots.

One published report quoted an Eagles source as saying Chung was a "weak link" in the secondary, failing to generate a turnover and "often getting lost in coverage." There were reported concerns that he was injury-prone, too.

Shedding light on what happened with the Eagles doesn't interest Chung.

"That's over, man," he said. "That's like living in the past. Things happen. It's part of life. I'm over that right now."

But does it surprise him what happened there in light of his previous relationship with Kelly?

"Philly's over, man," Chung said. "I'm done with Philly. We're on to New England."

Chung took up where he left off with the Patriots, starting all but one regular-season game and both of the club's playoff victories. He said he came to training camp taking nothing for granted, leaving his fate to coach Bill Belichick.

With the Patriots, Chung said his motto has been, "Don't expect anything. Bill makes those decisions. Everything can change in the blink of an eye. You just have to keep working, stay consistent and do the best you can."

Chung wasn't one of the New England regulars given a podium with which to address reporters on media day. Instead, he milled around the crowded US Airways Center floor, conversing with scribes who needed him.

"Little less pressure," he said. "Get to hang out, talk crap with you guys a little bit. It's fun."

Don't mind not being at a podium?

"Not at all," he said.

Chung, 27, comes from a big family, with four brothers and three sisters. He is the second-youngest of the litter.

"Being one of the youngest, you get made fun of a little bit, but it was good," he said. "With a lot of siblings, you learn a lot. You get to interact with different kind of personalities. I got to deal with my brothers always clowning me -- made me a little stronger. It was a good experience. It helped turn me into the man I am today."

Chung's mother, Sophia George-Chung, was a Jamaican reggae artist whose song, "Girlie Girlie," was the No. 1 hit in the country in 1985. His half-brother, Brian Carey Chung, is founding artistic director and choreographer with a dance and performance studio in New York City.

Did Patrick inherit such talents?

"Can't dance too much," he said. "I love music, though. Music is a stress reliever. You have a bad day, good day, OK day -- you listen to music, you can kind of relate to it."

Does he have a good singing voice?

"No," he said, smiling. "My mom does, and my sisters. Me and my dad? No chance."

Chung carries fond memories of his five years in Eugene.

"To this day, I love Oregon," he said. "If it didn't rain so much, I'd probably live out there. Oregon's awesome, man. Good people, good community, good support for sports. It's a good place."

Where does Chung make his offseason home now?

"I train in Arizona, but I'm everywhere -- West Coast, East Coast," he said. "I'm all over the place, man."

Chung -- who last week signed a three-year contract extension worth up to $8.2 million, with $3.4 million guaranteed -- hopes to be all over the University of Phoenix Stadium field Sunday, making plays for the Patriots.

"It's awesome," he said. "We're playing the biggest game of the season. I'm happy, man. Couldn't be more blessed."

kerryeggers@portlandtribune.com

Twitter: @kerryeggers

Add a comment