When players change teams during free agency, they don’t just relocate but also get immersed into new and different cultures — from how organizations are run at the top down to the locker room atmosphere. The New England Patriots’ is apparently a prime example when it comes to the latter: an example of how teammates can create a positive work environment and help make everybody in it better.
Three players that left the club over the last two weeks recently opened up about the world champions’ locker room culture and how it helped them grow as players. Trent Brown, who started all 19 games as the Patriots’ left tackle in 2018, and signed a record-breaking deal with the Oakland Raiders, credited New England’s culture as a main catalyst for his success: “My confidence shot through the roof,” the 25-year-old recently said.
“I think what took my game to the next level — because I was playing pretty well in San Fran — was just going to an organization who believed in me,” offensive tackle Trent Brown, who joined the Patriots via trade last year, said during his introductory press conference with the Raiders last week. “A locker room full of guys that believed in each other, pushed each other, we worked hard as a team every day, no egos.”
Tight end Dwayne Allen, who was released by New England before the start of free agency and later joined the Miami Dolphins, also praised the club’s locker room. “The fun in this game comes in winning, but it also comes with the people you have around you,” the veteran, who spent two years in New England and won his first Super Bowl in February, told Sirius XM Radio after signing with the Dolphins.
“When you have something special in the locker room, where the guys love each other, where the guys care for one another, you’re able to go out there with great coaching and accomplish feats like that — going on the road to beat a Kansas City team and then going to the Super Bowl and going up against a team that everybody picked would be in that game, and beating them,” Allen continued.
“The locker room is so special, full of guys that love the game of football, that love going to work, and that love each other,” concluded the 29-year-old, who like Brown joined the Patriots via trade, even though his acquisition happened one year earlier. A player that came to New England through the draft also mentioned the club’s culture and locker room atmosphere during his introduction with his new club: Trey Flowers.
During his introduction with the Detroit Lions, the standout edge defender pointed out how his familiarity with Matt Patricia and what the Lions head coach experienced in New England was a key factor in his decision to join the club. “It’s a tough league and in order to be successful, you gotta be tough — it can’t be comfortable,” said Flowers. “Just coming in from the Patriots organization, just seeing that atmosphere and understanding were coach Patricia came from.”
“Obviously I’ve got an understanding of what it takes and how it’s done,” continued the 25-year-old, who was a key figure in the Patriots’ two recent Super Bowl wins. And like Allen and Brown, he will now try to help create a similar atmosphere with his new team — and potentially reach a similar level of success as well.