Patriots sign safety Patrick Chung to two-year extension
The Patriots entered this offseason with outstanding depth at their safety position. They’ll finish this offseason with even more security with this valuable position in their secondary.
On Wednesday, the Pats signed Patrick Chung to a two-year extension through 2023, a person with knowledge of the move told the USA TODAY Network. The person spoke on condition of anonymity because the signing was not yet official. ESPN first reported the deal.
The strong safety was already signed through 2021.
Chung, 32, will receive a $3 million signing bonus with the new contract. He’ll be owed $12.8 million over the next four years. The ramifications of the move, however, extend beyond the amount of years on Chung’s contract. According to ESPN, this deal creates an extra $925,000 in cap space for the Patriots, who came into Wednesday with just $630,880 in cap room.
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That amount wasn’t enough for the Patriots to sign their top pick, second-round safety Kyle Dugger. By extending Chung, the Pats can spread out his cap hit through 2023. At this point, Dugger is the only member of the Patriots' 2020 draft class who remains unsigned.
By extending Chung, the Patriots ensure that their veteran strong safety will at least be around for this year and won’t be a surprising cut.
All-in-all, the Patriots are extremely well stocked at the safety position. McCourty and Chung give the Pats a strong back end to their already formidable secondary. However, both players turn 33 this August.
This offseason, the Pats traded safety Duron Harmon to the Detroit Lions and lost safety/special teamer Nate Ebner in free agency. The Patriots signed Adrian Phillips to a two-year, $6 million deal and Cody Davis to a one-year, $1.5 million contract. Phillips, 28, is an All-Pro special teamer who also made 94 total tackles for the Los Angeles Chargers two years ago. Davis, 30, has five career starts as a safety, but has been a core special teamer for most of his seven-year career. The Patriots put the finishing touches on the safety position by drafting Dugger, 24, No. 37 overall in April's NFL draft.
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