Patrick Chung is a Jamaican-American football player and strong safety for the New England Patriots. Starting his football career at quite a young age, Chung steadily stepped up the ranks before getting to the NFL in 2009. Since then, he has received awards, as well as commendations for his performances in the big league. Spending most of his career with the Patriots, Chung has had his best moments with the football team. Below are the highlights and his journey so far.
Details About Patrick Chung’s Early Life
Patrick Chung was born on August 19, 1987, in Kingston, Jamaica. Born to Jamaican parents, Chung has a mixed heritage of Asian and African background. He lived in Jamaica with his three sisters and four brothers until the age of 10 when his family moved to the US. He attended Rancho Cucamonga High School where he was part of the football team as a wide receiver and safety. His outstanding performances made him a two-time All-League pick. After high school, Chung attended the University of Oregon in 2004. Joining the university’s football team, he got the team’s rover position in 2005 after ranking second with 91 tackles and 5 solos.
During his college football career, Patrick Chung received several honours, as well as awards. He received a spot on the Sporting News Freshman All-American Team and an All-Pacific-10 Conference honourable mention in 2006. He received the latter after ranking third on the team with 84 tackles. The safety was also named Second Team All-American and was given the Gordon E. Wilson Award which is awarded to the team’s top special player. He holds a record in Oregon history for starting more games than any other defensive player, with 51 straight games while he was in college.
On January 16, 2008, he made plans to forfeit his last year of eligibility and enter the 2008 NFL Draft. He later receded from his decision and chose to finish his senior year at Oregon. He was part of the Cincinnati Bengals in the 2009 Senior Bowl, with his team losing to the South 18-35. Attending the week-long showcase NFL Scouting Combine, Patrick Chung was able to complete most of the drills before getting a knee injury. After a small recovery period, he attended Oregon’s pro day to complete the drills his injury had earlier prevented him from completing.
The Star Athlete’s Career Highlights
In the second round of the 2009 NFL Draft, the New England Patriots secured the services of Patrick Chung as their safety. On July 27, 2009, the franchise signed Chung on a 4-year contract worth $5 million, with a signing bonus of $2 million. The athlete made his debut in the Patriot’s opening match against the Buffalo Bills, recording one tackle in a 25-24 victory. He was part of the Patriots’ starting team in their season-opener game against the Cincinnati Bengals. In a 38-24 victory, Chung got a career-high score of 16 combined tackles (with 12 solo tackles).
His first career playoff was on January 10, 2010, when the Patriots were defeated by the Baltimore Ravens in the AFC Wildcard Game. On September 18, 2011, in a game against the San Diego Chargers—which the Patriots won 35-21—Patrick finished the match with five combined tackles. Leaving during the third quarter, he returned in the fourth with a hard cast around his thumb. The following week, Patrick was out after undergoing surgery for his fractured thumb. In the 2012 NFL season, Chung started in the Patriots’ first six games before he got a shoulder injury that saw him miss four games from Week 7-11.
Following the end of his contract with the New England Patriots, the Philadelphia Eagles signed Patrick Chung on March 12, 2013, to a three-year, $10 million contract. As a bonus, $4 million was guaranteed upfront. His debut with the team was against the Washington Redskins. With the Eagles’ 33-27 win, Chung recorded seven combined tackles. Despite a good enough season with the Eagles, Patrick Chung was released by the team on March 11, 2014. This was attributed mainly to his injuries and problems with tackling.
Subsequently, the New England Patriots took him back, signing him to a one-year contract with a fee of $1.1 million on April 3, 2014. The contract also included a signing bonus of $60k and a guarantee of $120k. With his improved performance, the contract was extended to 3 years and the fee increased to $8.2 million. Again, his contract was renewed on March 19, 2018, for two years with a signing fee of $7.8 million. This keeps him with the Patriots until the 2020 season. He also got named team captain for the first time.
Here’s What We Know About His Family
Patrick Chung’s parents are Ronald Chung and Sophia George. His father is half Jamaican, half Chinese, giving the footballer his Asian heritage. His mother used to be a top-rated reggae star in the 1980s. She sang the 1985 hit Girlie Girlie, which peaked at no. 1 in Jamaica and entered the Top 10 in the UK. Working together as a music power couple, Ronald was also her manager and music producer. Sophia has enough hits to fill up a greatest hits’ album titled Girlie Girlie – The Best of Sophia George. Chung has a half-brother called Brian Carey Chung, a choreographer and ballet dancer.
Patrick Chung is a married man with a family of his own. He is married to Cecilia Champion who he met in Boston, Massachusetts before they became a couple. Eventually, the duo tied the knot on June 30, 2012. The marriage has been blessed with a child; son Taj Hames Chung born on September 18, 2010.