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Chris Hogan Conference Call Transcript - 3/14/2016

New England Patriots WR Chris Hogan addresses the media during a conference call on Monday, March 14, 2016.


Q: Have you already begun the process of getting to know Tom Brady and what path do you envision taking in order to do that?

CH: I know that communication is huge in this league and especially with Tom. This whole process and just signing with the Patriots really has just kind of unfolded. It's really just getting set now. I'm looking forward to getting in the building and being around the guys, getting to know the guys, and getting to know Tom. It's all very exciting for me.

Q: How much have you improved from your rookie season and how much more do you think you are able to grow?

CH: I have grown so much since I started in this league and it's something that every single year I'm always growing. I'm always learning. I almost tell people sometimes that I'm still new to this sport and I like to approach it that way – that there's so much for me to learn and there's still so much for me to grow as a receiver and as a football player. Every single year is a year for me to take a look at how I've grown and how I can get better and better myself as a football player, as a receiver, and just as an overall team player.

Q: Do you feel like you are the prototypical type of Patriot and have you spoken with Rex Ryan since you signed here in New England?

CH: I'm not sure about the prototypical Patriot. I know that I'm coming to this team to help this team win in any way possible. I'll do whatever it takes to get on the field and whatever is asked of me and whatever is needed of me. I'm willing to do anything and everything to help this team win and I hope that I'm able to do that. I have not spoken to Rex.

Q: What were your initial thoughts when you first got the call from the Patriots?

CH: When I got the call that the Patriots were interested it was a very surreal feeling. I've always looked up to watching them play and they've been a team that has a long history of winning and just to be considered to be a part of this team is a great honor. I'm still letting it all sink in because this is an awesome opportunity for me.

Q: How did your initial visit with the team unfold?

CH: My visit was just a meeting with the coaches and talking about being a part of the Patriots and just whether I can come in here and help this team win.

Q: To what would you attribute your recent success in playing against the Patriots and secondly, how much pride do you take in playing special teams and do you envision maintaining that role here in New England?

CH: To answer your second question, special teams has always been a part of me as a player and I've always taken a lot of pride in playing special teams because that's really how I made my first roster. That was really as a special teams player and a core special teamer. I saw some time on offense a little bit but hopefully coming in and playing for the Patriots I'm able to contribute a lot on special teams and I hope I can just whether if that's where they need me then I'm more than willing to play on special teams. Whatever they need me to do I'm willing to do just to help this team win. To answer your first question, I just happened to have a lot of success against the Patriots – funny story, I scored my first touchdown against the Patriots – but I think my success wasn't really attributed to any contributing factor other than me just watching film and knowing my opponent.

Q: How do you think you will be able to fit into this offense and what made you decide on coming here to New England as opposed to somewhere else?

CH: The Patriots were the first to express some interest. I don't exactly know how I'm going to fit into this offense yet and I'm really just looking forward to getting up to Foxborough, getting in the building, getting to know the people, getting to know my teammates. That will be the most important thing for me for the upcoming months then obviously my role will be more defined as I start progressing and learning.

Q: I didn't notice Monmouth as I was getting ready to fill out my March Madness bracket.

CH: I'm a little upset about that.

Q: How would you sum up your journey to the NFL?

CH: It has been an incredible journey that I've taken to get to this point. It was not a path that you see every single day and there were a lot of bumps in the road and I had to work very hard to get to where I am today and I continue to approach it, my career and my journey, just like that. I still have to keep working just as hard as I was when I decided to do this. It's been a long road to get to where I am today.

Q: How much did you discuss your lacrosse background with Coach [Bill] Belichick and do you see any crossover on the football field from your lacrosse skills?

CH: I think there's a ton of carryover with the two sports, lacrosse and football. Obviously there's eye-hand coordination and you have to have really great eye-hand coordination in the sport of lacrosse and obviously in my position specifically. I think that there's also carryover to when I have the ball in lacrosse, that field awareness and being able to move in the open field and dodge people. You can carry that over and say it's the same aspect as having a football in your hands and having that in the open field. As far as Coach Belichick, yeah, he's a huge lacrosse fan. I'm pretty sure I played against this son at Rutgers my sophomore and junior years. There's always that. We have that lacrosse connection.

Q: Was the decision to transfer from Penn State to Monmouth due to your love of lacrosse?

CH: I played four years. That was really the beginning of my story and my path. I decided to play football which was always a dream of mine and that really sparked this whole journey and transferring from Penn State to Monmouth to try and play football for a year.

Q: How much of a foundation did your practice squad time build for you earlier in your career?

CH: The years that I spent on practice squad were great. I look back on that year and it was a year that I was able to learn an incredible amount just because of the reps I was getting going against first rounder's and the first-team defense all the time. That was a time when I was really learning a lot about the position and really shaping myself into the receiver that I wanted to be. Those types of years are invaluable. Yeah, it would've been great to play and be on a roster, but at the end of the day when I look back those practice squad years really helped shape me into the football player that I am today. I wouldn't have wanted it any other way. It helped me kind of transition into the NFL and learn how to be a pro and it really has helped me a lot in the years going forward.

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