FOXBORO, Mass. — New England Patriots rookie Christian Gonzalez already received praise for his performance in spring practices.

And now that the cornerback is onto his first NFL training camp, the acclaim for Gonzalez, who fell to the Patriots at No. 17 overall in this year’s draft, hasn’t stopped.

This time it was veteran Patriots corner Jonathan Jones impressed by what Gonzalez has brought to New England in the early going. The Patriots haven’t shied away from giving Gonzalez a full plate of responsibility, either. The 6-foot-2, 205-pound Oregon product was on the field with the first team defense again Thursday for competitive periods, matching up with JuJu Smith-Schuster. The veteran wide receiver caught two touchdowns against the rookie — a good learning experience — but Gonzalez also helped force two incompletions from starting quarterback Mac Jones.

Gonzalez figures to immediately have a large role in the Patriots’ defense, meaning he needs to quickly gain the trust of his teammates, especially those in the secondary. And by Jonathan Jones’ account, he’s already doing that with the way he has gone about his business.

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“He’s bought in,” Jones said following the second practice of training camp. “He’s bought in from the spring. Continuing to get better day after day.”

Gonzalez stood out last fall with Oregon, recording four interceptions, which was the third-most in the Pac-12, along with making 50 tackles.

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There are questions about Gonzalez’s competitive spirit, which presumably made him slide out of the top 10 in the draft despite his unquestioned talent. But the 21-year-old has seemed to answer any concerns during the beginning of training camp along with breaking out of his shell to continue to gain the belief in his ability of those around him.

“He’s been real with us,” Jonathan Jones said. “He’s been around, he showed his personality. He’s a rookie so it’s kind of like that neat space. But when he comes in, he says his voice and he’s been out there and competing and that’s what you want to see with young guys.”

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Featured image via Eric Canha/USA TODAY Sports Images