Tuesday, August 01, 2017

PATRIOTS NOTEBOOK: Flowers planning to catch foes’ eyes

After enjoying a breakout year in 2016, defensive lineman Trey Flowers figures opponents will key on him this season.

By Glen Farley
July 31, 2017

FOXBORO – Where Trey Flowers is concerned, it seems opponents didn’t know what was coming last year.

After appearing in just one game in an injury-marred rookie campaign, the second-year defensive lineman led the Patriots in sacks with seven and capped off his second NFL season by registering a team-leading six tackles and 21/2 sacks in the Patriots’ 34-28 overtime victory over Atlanta in Super Bowl LI.

Where Flowers is concerned, it seems he knows precisely what is coming this year.

“You’ve got to understand,” Flowers said following Sunday’s training camp practice (there was no public training camp practice on Monday), “if you have a little success a lot of people want to key in on you and kind of approach you a different way.”

Flowers says the key to his game is making certain there is no change in his approach to the game.

The key, he says, is consistency.

“Just got to continue to work hard, continue to get better, continue to work on technique,” Flowers said.

A fourth-round pick out of Arkansas, Flowers says lessons have been learned over his two years in the pros.

“The understanding of the game, the understanding of the scheme of the defense, of what they want to do, understanding how to be a Patriot, how to be a pro, things like that,” said Flowers, listing the lessons he’s learned. “Being aware of certain situations.”

The current situation is this: With Rob Ninkovich’s retirement, with two years under his belt, at the age of 23 (he’ll turn 24 on Aug. 16) Flowers now leads the Patriots’ defensive ends in terms of service to the team.

Flowers finds himself surrounded by Patriots newbies, an offseason youth movement at the position bringing in Kony Ealy (the 25-year-old arrived via a trade with the Carolina Panthers) and Derek Rivers and Deatrich Wise Jr. (the two 23-year-olds came via the draft).

Selected four picks ahead of him, Flowers’ 2015 draft classmate Geneo Grissom has contributed on special teams but has yet to make any kind of impact on the defensive side of the ball.

“We’ve got a lot of good guys on the defensive line ready to make plays,” Flowers said in speaking of the group as a whole. “We all know we’ve got to step up and be productive.”

As for Flowers, he’s simply looking to build on the foundation he laid a year ago.

Personally, you’ve got to get better each and every year,” the 6-foot-2, 265-pounder said. “You’ve got to put in the time, put in the work. I’m working on every part of my game, whether it’s stopping the run, whether it’s rushing the passer, whether it’s watching film, studying guys.”

Popular Posts