The Patriots recently extended offensive lineman Marcus Cannon and special teams ace Matt Slater, and they continued to take care of their depth players this morning. ESPN’s Field Yates tweets that the team has signed safety Patrick Chung to a three-year extension worth up to $8.2MM, with $3.4MM guaranteed.
The Boston Globe’s Ben Volin clarifies (via Twitter) that Chung will make $1MM, $1.4MM and $1.8MM as the contract progresses. Volin adds that the veteran will receive a $2.4MM signing bonus, as well as $200K in annual roster bonuses and $500K for incentives in 2016 and 2017. Due to the relatively low cap hit, Volin states his belief that Chung should at least stick around for two more seasons (Twitter link).
The Patriots inked Chung to a one-year deal this offseason with the mindset that he’d compete for a starting safety role. The 27-year-old has rewarded the organization with one of the best seasons of his career, as he’s compiled 85 tackles and an interception while playing in 16 games for the first time since his rookie season. The advanced statistics suggest that Chung was one of the best safeties in the league in 2014, as Pro Football Focus (subscription required) ranked him as the 12th-best at his position.
Chung will now be sticking with the organization that selected him in the second round of the 2009 draft. Chung signed a one-year deal with the Eagles two years ago, but a mediocre 2013 season prompted his release.
Earlier this season, coach Bill Belichick spoke about Chung’s tenure in Philadelphia and his reunion with the Patriots (via ESPNBoston.com’s Mike Reiss):
“I think some of the circumstance of the ’12 season didn’t work out as well as we all hoped, for a combination of reasons. Pat and I talked about that last year after he was released from Philadelphia. Pat and I talked about that. We had a long conversation about a lot of things. I don’t think it was anybody’s fault. It was just one of those things that didn’t work out.
“We both felt that we would want to try to give it another shot and we were able to come to an agreement on that contractually, and I think he has done a real good job for us. He’s filled a lot of different roles. He’s played well, helped us in the kicking game, helped us defensively in a number of areas. He’s been around the ball, productive.”