When the Cincinnati Bengals sent Marquis Flowers to the New England Patriots for a seventh round pick in 2018, the linebacker joined former teammate Rex Burkhead in Foxboro.
Flowers is now adjusting to life with the Patriots, who he says have a “different culture” than the Bengals.
“Well, it’s definitely a different culture, you know,” Flowers told The Sun Chronicle. “Cincinnati, you know, we’re still in the NFL and we still have to be a professional... We still have rules to follow. But it’s just certain things that, here, it’s more strict than Cincinnati.”
Many former Bengals have spent time with the Patriots. Flowers has a former teammate from Cincinnati with him in Burkhead, who’s also in his first year with the Patriots after being signed away in free agency.
“Rex has been great, showing me around, giving me rides, kind of explaining the rules, the kind of stuff that I may have missed coming in late,” Flowers said. “Rex has been great helping me with it, and Rex and I were good friends back in Cincinnati.”
Flowers says he’s working toward learning the Patriots’ playbook and remaining professional in the process. He also detailed the process of how he found out the Bengals were trading him to the Patriots. Initially, he feared the worst, which was that he was being cut. But, that wasn’t quite the case.
“Marvin called me on an off day, we had just played a game and he called me and told me to come in and talk to him,” Flowers said. “So I’m thinking, ‘OK, I’m getting released.’ But at the end of the conversation, he said, ‘We’re actually trading you.’ To me it’s the same thing … not the same thing, but it’s like I’ve got to bring all my stuff, turn it all into him and get going.”
Getting traded to the Patriots most certainly isn’t the same thing as being cut. Flowers now has a chance to go out and earn playing time with the reigning Super Bowl champions.
“I’ve got to go out and perform and do my job or else they’ll find somebody else to do it,” Flowers said, understanding nothing is being handed to him. “It’s always pressure, but it’s good pressure. There’s different things going on in the world, obviously, but it’s definitely pressure.”
It will be interesting to see how Flowers does in New England.