Patrick Chung’s retirement announcement Thursday morning prompted an outpouring of support from current and former New England Patriots players.
Among them: quarterback Tom Brady, who played alongside Chung for 10 seasons in New England before signing with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers last offseason.
“What an incredible career,” Brady wrote in a congratulatory Instagram post. “It was an honor to be your teammate!!”
A member of New England’s All-Decade Team for the 2010s, Chung was a vital part of three Super Bowl-winning teams during his time with the Patriots, patrolling the secondary as a versatile safety/linebacker/slot hybrid. He opted out of the 2020 season due to COVID-19 concerns.
The Patriots likely will look to replace Chung with a combination of Adrian Phillips, Kyle Dugger and Jalen Mills. Phillips and Dugger both played well in Chung’s absence last season, and Mills, who played all over Philadelphia’s defensive backfield in 2020, is one of the 10 external free agents who have agreed to terms with New England this week.
Chung voiced his support for Brady on social media during the Buccaneers’ recent playoff won. Brady won his seventh championship in his first season outside New England, defeating Patrick Mahomes and the Kansas City Chiefs in Super Bowl LV.