Chris Hogan reflects on time in New England, signing with Panthers: 'It was time to move on'

Ryan Hannable
May 27, 2019 - 7:55 am

Following three seasons with the Patriots, Chris Hogan signed with the Panthers this offseason.

Speaking with ESPN's Mike Reiss, the veteran wide out reflected on his time in New England, which included three Super Bowl appearances and two Super Bowl titles.

"There's so many things. Obviously, the ones that stick out are going to all three Super Bowls," he said. "All in all, I think the biggest thing I really found there was the team. That's something I probably will miss the most -- just how close everyone was and how everyone came to work every single day. We all had fun doing it. In the grind of the season, it gets hard sometimes, but everyone was in it together. For me, that was the most fun -- going to work every day with those guys and winning games. It doesn't get much better than that."

Hogan said he has no regrets on his time with the Patriots, which saw him struggle a bit last season as he didn't seem to have that same connection with Tom Brady as he did the first couple. It may have been a case of the team wanting to move on from him, but the receiver didn't want to get into it.

"I'd rather not go into too much detail on that, but it's business, and I understand that. I appreciate everything that was given to me in New England -- the opportunity to go there and play -- and I'll always hold every single one of those people in that organization [in high regard]: Mr. [Robert] Kraft, Bill [Belichick]," he said. "It was time to move on, I guess. I take it for what it is. I enjoyed my time. And now I'm excited about the opportunity in front of me."

Now, Hogan will play for the Panthers, which is even further away from his wife Ashley and two young twins, who live on Long Island where she is a doctor. His wife is due with their third child in October, and Hogan admitted it will be challenging not being able to just hop in a car and drive a few hours to see them.

"It's something we obviously put a lot of thought into," he said. "People want to talk about the stuff that I do, but my wife is the engine that makes it all go. It will be tricky. There will be some tough times, especially with the kids getting older, but we're in this together, and we make it work. It will be more flights than driving on [Interstate] 95, but luckily it's a short flight, and we're both excited about this opportunity. ... The baby is due Oct. 6 -- on a Sunday, obviously.

"We'll cross that bridge when we get to it, but I plan to be there for the birth of my child. That's something very special to me, and I know I want to be there for my wife and all she does for me and our family. So that would mean a lot to me to be there. For now, I'm going home [every weekend] and trying to be 'Super Dad' and take care of all my chores and try to take a little bit off her plate."

On the field, he's just looking forward to making an impact with his new team and working with quarterback Cam Newton.

"New chapter, a new opportunity to prove myself to a bunch of guys who haven't really seen much of me," Hogan said. "These are the type of situations I like to be in. I'm really excited about it, learning a new offense and going through all that kind of stuff. Really just putting my head down and doing what I do. It's what I've been doing the last nine years that I've been trying to play this game [in the NFL] and taking advantage of all the opportunities you get."

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