Tuesday, August 9, 2011
Updated: August 10, 12:18 PM ET
Chad Ochocinco to stay with a fan
By Mike Reiss
FOXBOROUGH, Mass. -- Patriots receiver Chad Ochocinco is still settling into his new surroundings in New England, and he's taking an unusual approach to his living situation.
"I'm going to do something different, I'm actually going to stay with a fan for the first two, three weeks of the season," he said Tuesday. "That should be fun, until I get myself acclimated and learn my way around."
Ochocinco hasn't yet picked the fan.
"I'm not sure how it's going to work, but they have to have Internet. They have to have Xbox," he said. "That's about it."
Asked if he was serious, Ochocinco said, "Have I ever lied to you before?"
Told there were some "crazy" fans, Ochocinco said, "I rode a bull."
Tuesday marked the second time that Ochocinco spoke with New England reporters in a group setting. After the first time, Ochocinco requested a hug, but there was no such request this time.
As usual, there were a few light moments, with Ochocinco explaining how he purposely hasn't used a navigation device while exploring Boston and its surrounding areas.
"The way I learn a new city is by traveling out, adventuring out, getting lost on purpose," he said. "This past weekend, I was a little frustrated because I was lost for about an hour, an hour and 30 minutes, and I couldn't get where I needed to. (But) that's it. Boston, or actually heaven, has been good."
Ochocinco joked that, "A lot of people are not too fond of the Prius that I drive, which I find hard to believe. Other than that, the people have been great."
Ochocinco's presence at the Boston Red Sox game against the New York Yankees on Sunday drew attention. He called the experience at Fenway Park "cool", which is also how he described playing with quarterback Tom Brady.
Through 14 practices, Ochocinco has had an up-and-down start to training camp, dropping several passes, but also making some terrific catches. Often lining up with the team's top receivers from 2010, Wes Welker and Deion Branch, he is in position to be one of Brady's main targets.
"Surprisingly, I've caught on to so much material in such a short period of time," he said, later adding that he's "very confident."
As for his drops, he replied simply, "I'm human, right? All of us are human. Balls are going to be dropped. It's part of the game."
If not for Brady, Welker and Branch, Ochocinco isn't sure he'd be primed to play such a significant role at this time.
"They've probably made it the easiest, with so much verbiage as far as signals and other things in the offense that's hard for me to get," he said, adding that the terminology in Cincinnati was numbers-based, which is different than New England. "They have sped up the process to where I think that even with a game being played very soon, I could probably go out there and play at full speed without having to think."
Since joining the Patriots, he has worked closely with Brady on the importance of communicating without words.
"Once we're on the field, there is no talking. I just look in his eyes and that's it, and that's how we communicate on the field," he said. "That's what I like about here. It's really, really cool."
Overall, Ochocinco said wearing a Patriots uniform is a "feeling of comfort" for him. He also likes the approach of the coaching staff.
"They don't tell you when you do good; they moreso correct you when you mess up. I like that," he said. "You never know where you are. You're always just trying to find a way to perfect your craft."
Mike Reiss covers the Patriots for ESPNBoston.com.