The New England Patriots are dealing with several issues at the moment, and it seems like they lack punt returners. Patrick Chung has something to say about this.
Danny Amendola joined the Miami Dolphins in free agency, and Julian Edelman will be out in the first four games of the regular season. Cyrus Jones and Riley McCarron were both released, and Rex Burkhead suffered an injury. Is there any other candidate on the active roster? Maybe they will look for any atypical choices, including safety Patrick Chung.
Safeties don’t usually return kicks or punts in the league. If by any chance they do this, they’d have to play cornerback. Chung is a rare safety who tried returning in professional ranks. Of course, the results aren’t the best ever, but it sure helps. The safety has three career punt returns for 11 yards, and nine kick returns for 161 yards. The most important thing is that Chung has never fumbled a return. He received chances because he doesn’t fumble. That’s why McCarron lost his spot on the roster. In other words, Chung is more than ready if called upon again.
“I mean I always practice it. We always practice, so if my name’s called, I’m going to go in there. If it’s not, I’m going to do something else. I’m not really worried about that part. When that part comes, we’ll figure it out,” Chung said.
But, the safety is a short-term patch, and the team needs a long-term returning option. Edelman is important for the game, and he can’t be risked on returns. Cordarrelle Patterson is an excellent kick returner, but he managed to return just one punt just because he isn’t comfortable in the role.
Maybe Chung will get the chance on Sunday. Let’s see how will that work for the Patriots.