New England Patriots

James White and Patrick Chung have long been considered leaders in the Patriots locker room. Now, they’ve been rewarded for their leadership efforts.

White and Chung are the two first-timers among the Patriots’ 2018 team captains, being named for the first time as part of a group of six. The Boston Globe’s Jim McBride first reported on Thursday that the Patriots have elected White and Chung as captains, to go along with Tom Brady, Devin McCourty, Matthew Slater, and David Andrews.

Rob Gronkowski, Dont’a Hightower, and Duron Harmon are the three former team captains who were not named for 2018.

White had been appearing at midfield for pregame coin tosses in the preseason, indicating that he’d been elected a team captain. Safety Nate Ebner was also present for those, but it’s reportedly Chung who got the nod instead.

White, 26, signed a three-year extension with the Patriots last April that has him signed in New England through as far as the 2020 season. He’s become one of Tom Brady’s most trusted targets, most notably catching 14 passes for 110 yards and a touchdown in Super Bowl LI against the Atlanta Falcons. He also scored a two-point conversion and rushed six times for 29 yards with two touchdowns, including the game-winner in overtime.

Chung has spent eight of his nine NFL seasons in a Patriots uniform, returning for a second stint after one season with the Philadelphia Eagles. He’s developed into one of the league’s better coverage safeties against tight ends and has always been a strong presence against the run, sometimes playing a hybrid linebacker role for Bill Belichick’s defense.

Expect to see all six captains on the field for the coin toss before Sunday’s season opener against the Houston Texans.

— By Matt Dolloff,

Matt Dolloff is a digital producer for Any opinions expressed do not necessarily reflect those of 98.5 The Sports Hub, Beasley Media Group, or any subsidiaries. Have a news tip, question, or comment for Matt? Follow him on Twitter @mattdolloff or email him at

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