Unrestricted free agent center/guard Lucas Patrick signed a two-year contract with the Bears March 16. He arrives after playing his first six NFL seasons with the Packers. In Chicago, Patrick will reunite with new Bears offensive coordinator Luke Getsy, who spent five of the last six seasons as a Packers assistant.
Patrick recently spoke exclusively with ChicagoBears.com senior writer Larry Mayer. The following is a transcript of their conversation:
LM: How much interest did you receive in free agency, and why did you decide to sign with the Bears?
LP: "There were other offers. There were about 10-12 teams that were interested, with differing opportunities and different offers. But this seemed like the perfect fit of both. Just to come here with Luke, the opportunity to help establish something here, not that there's not been amazing history, but the recent past hasn't been too exciting. I'm used to winning and that's what I'm bringing. We're going to win games."
LM: What type of mentality are you bringing to the Bears on and off the field?
LP: "Off the field, I like to have fun and relax. But on the field I play football the way it's meant to be played: physical, tough, smart, disciplined. That's what I pride myself on."
LM: At center, you're in a natural leadership position on the offensive line. How important is embracing that role to you?
LP: "It's very important. It's a little added responsibility, but it's nothing that I haven't been a part of. I've had different leadership roles in different locker rooms, so I'm excited about the opportunity."
LM: You entered the NFL as an undrafted free agent. Is that a chip on your shoulder that still motivates you?
LP: "It's a big chip, [especially] with my story, truly being a rookie minicamp invite tryout player and being sent home after that. So, technically all 32 teams said no. I'm coming in here and this is a team that said, 'yes, we want you,' which is an amazing feeling. And I think that opens even more doors of playing harder and showing more than the chip on your shoulder."
LM: You signed with the Bears after playing for the Packers. How special is it to you to play for two of the NFL's most historic franchises?
LP: "It's extremely special. There's a reason that when the 100th [NFL] season opened, it was opened here. There's a reason that the Super Bowl trophy's named after Vince Lombardi. There's a reason this rivalry is important because it is the NFL. This is what the shield represents: tradition, excellence, teams that are built on old school football, winning tough games in the elements, and to be a part of this is so special."
Get an exclusive look inside the Bears' practice facility as free agent acquisitions Justin Jones, Nicholas Morrow, Lucas Patrick and Equanimeous St. Brown tour the building, sign their contracts and meet with the media during their first days in Chicago.