A year after leaving Patriots for Bears, Akiem Hicks has no regrets

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When he became a free agent last year, defensive lineman Akiem Hicks had an offer to stay in New England. But he had a better offer to go to Chicago, and that’s the one he took.

As it turned out, he played for a three-win team in Chicago, whereas he would have a Super Bowl ring if he had stayed in New England. So does he regret it?

‘‘Not in the slightest,’’ he said. ‘‘Because one of the reasons I came here was . . . a chance to rebuild. I had a chance to be a part of something growing. Being a prominent player [on the Patriots], I enjoyed that aspect of it. I think it’s going to benefit me going forward.’’

Hicks did acknowledge, however, that he thinks playing on a bad team cost him a trip to the Pro Bowl.

‘‘I will say this: I know there’s a couple of guys that went to the Pro Bowl last year at the defensive end/defensive interior position that I’ve made way more plays and played better than. That’s just part of the game,” he said. “There’s going to be guys that get in if they have the right city, the right time, the right things going on. And team wins play a big part in that. The more success for your team, the more spotlight gets put on you. [But] I do compare myself as one of the better defensive interior guys in the league.’’

The Patriots have managed to convince some players to take less money to play for the best-run team in the league. Hicks was not one of those players. If he has any second thoughts, he’s not admitting it.

47 responses to “A year after leaving Patriots for Bears, Akiem Hicks has no regrets

  1. Yeah, that was a good move…. If you’re not really into playing in probowls and super bowls….

  2. lol

    sure dude

    bb called you and tried to match

    fact: you want to go by the beat of our own drum
    and are not a winner

    that is the truth

    can’t commit what it takes to be a winner, want
    the control and the money only

  3. With such a short career on average, the equation for players who haven’t cashed in with big contracts almost has to include money. Big difference between a guy like Hicks choosing to leave NE in order to secure his future and someone foolish such as Revis who left “football” behind to add a few more dollars to a pile of millions. Generally, it’s not until the end of their careers that these guys reflect and identify any real regrets.

  4. It’s good he’s at peace with his horrible decision. Bears will be rebuilding for years. Absolutely no joy on the horizon.

  5. Patriots have a classic case of monopoly going on…players play for less money to win championships (see Golden State Warriors)

  6. tylawspick6 says:
    Jun 17, 2017 12:05 PM

    fact: you want to go by the beat of our own drum
    and are not a winner

    that is the truth

    can’t commit what it takes to be a winner, want
    the control and the money only
    ============================

    What a bunch of bull. Hicks was a rental acquired to fill a need. He played well in a situational role in New England for short money and left to become a starter in Chicago with half his money guaranteed. Any player that made $3.5M in four years shouldn’t be knocked for accepting an offer that gave him $10M in two. You are the worst type of fan, you see nothing but winners while they are here on the team’s terms and losers if they leave. I am not some millennial and have been a Pats fan since the days of Holovak, you are an embarrassment to the rest of us.

  7. The Patriots success is awesome. But there is a high level of underpaying on the team. Guys have to weigh the millions they lose in contract differential to the after football life of being a super bowl winner.

  8. Some players don’t really care about winning and they gravitate to teams like the Bears, Bills, Jags, Browns etc.

    Nothing wrong with just working for a paycheck, but at least be man enough to admit it.

  9. He’s happy where he ended up, and I’m happy where he ended up. Time for a beer and more Revenge Tour 2016 highlights.

  10. Yes. People with character and integrity always choose a respectable organization over one led by mumble mouth cheaters and cutesy liars.

  11. For a lot of these guys this is the only chance they have to earn more than six figures per year. They should earn as much as they can now.

  12. Akiem will live the rest of his life knowing that his personal zenith was representing New England, even if he can’t publicly admit it. Everything after that means little because NFL players fall into two categories – Patriots and those who wish they were.

  13. Just look at it this way: in Chicago he plays in less games and gets the money and watches all the playoff games on TV. Over a 5 year period, he could end up playing 15 games less……you know that is almost a whole season of wear and tear.

  14. bannedfromchoirpractice says:
    Jun 17, 2017 2:00 PM
    Yes. People with character and integrity always choose a respectable organization over one led by mumble mouth cheaters and cutesy liars.

    ________________

    And FIVE SB trophies. Don’t forget that.

  15. This is professional sports. The players get paid to do this. The Bears $$ will help pay for his kids college and if he invests properly have wealth greater than most. A Super bowl won’t mean jack in comparison to that. He’s a winner if he sets up his family for generational wealth. Superbowls are the cherry on top of the sundae. The money is the ice cream.

  16. Personally I think he made a mistake but I am not judging him. He has to live his life as he sees fit. But I would add that besides being a champion if he had stayed and been named to the Pro Bowl that would mean an extra almost $230k between SB winner bonus and winning the Pro Bowl.

    But we have seen this again and again; players come to NE, sometimes at a discount, to rejuvenate their careers and they leave for one more big paycheck. Guys like Long and Bennett get to experience being a champion then cash it in. I just hope they do not regret their decisions.

  17. .
    ‘Because one of the reasons I came here was . . . a chance to rebuild. I had a chance to be a part of something growing. ”

    Rotflmao….. He left so he could play for a loser. If he’s lucky, he’ll see the Bears win total grow from 3 to 5 and possibly to 8 before he’s cut for a cheaper alternative.
    .

  18. He was acquired in a trade for michael hoomanawah..BB tried to keep him but he left for more money.He only played one year so nothing really lost on Patriots but for him to say he wants to be part of a rebuild and only signed for 2 years and complaining about the probowl is a sign that he regrets it.Nobody notices losers but winners of SBs get paid(M.Bennett).

  19. When your father is the King of Zamunda, you don’t need the extra money.

    He did well with the Pats and should have stayed.

  20. Football is a business, he went for the most money, i dont blame him, unless your a Chris Long type player who already made a ton of money, he made the right decision.

  21. bannedfromchoirpractice says:
    Jun 17, 2017 2:00 PM
    Yes. People with character and integrity always choose a respectable organization over one led by mumble mouth cheaters and cutesy liars.

    —————–
    Yup. Thats why the Patriots have better luck attracting character and integrity that some other teams.

  22. orndorf2 says:
    Jun 17, 2017 2:38 PM
    This is professional sports. The players get paid to do this. The Bears $$ will help pay for his kids college and if he invests properly have wealth greater than most. A Super bowl won’t mean jack in comparison to that. He’s a winner if he sets up his family for generational wealth. Superbowls are the cherry on top of the sundae. The money is the ice cream.

    ——————
    This is well put. Sure he wishes he could be getting a SB ring AND the extra money, that what you were hearing in his words. But thats not to say he regrets the choice between legacy or wealth as he made it.

  23. So long as he doesn’t diss his old team, I’ve no problem with a guy who chooses the money, but I will say this – you can only live in one house at a time and only drive one porsche at a time, but you can wear up to ten rings. But best wishes to da Bears, never disliked them, and hope they improve this season.

  24. ————————————————————–
    Greenlargo says:
    Jun 17, 2017

    Yup. Thats why the Patriots have better luck attracting character and integrity that some other teams.
    ————————————————————–

    Aaron Hernandez (your idea of character).

    And by the way, collecting asterisks for cheating is not the same thing as attracting character and integrity.

  25. bannedfromchoirpractice says:
    Jun 17, 2017 7:42 PM

    Aaron Hernandez (your idea of character).

    And by the way, collecting asterisks for cheating is not the same thing as attracting character and integrity.

    1) The Patriots organization spent a quarter mil replacing fans’ Hernandez jerseys with any other one they wanted.

    2) Show me the asterisks. They exist only in your tiny momma’s basement mind.

  26. The truth is that the patsies use up their players on the cheap before they kick them to the curb. All the players should leave after their initial contract expires.

  27. pastabelly says:
    Jun 17, 2017 8:57 PM

    He helped the Pats win a Super Bowl and acted with class on the way out. What more could you ask for?
    ___________________

    Fair compensation for your contributions. Not paying players on the cheap, the patriot way.

  28. Strictly as a player of course your goal is to win championships. You play to win, to be the best. However as a business man, father, husband you should be playing to provide a future for your family. Reap the rewards while you can because everyone knows that when your “done” you will be cast away like rotten meat. The patriots run a very effective team first franchise, that why the win. However I do not fault any player who uses the success of playing for a team like the Pats to further their own earning potential. Patriots acquire guys like Hicks all the time and get the most out of them, what is wrong with the player getting the most $ out of his success with the team?

  29. Strictly as a player of course your goal is to win championships. You play to win, to be the best. However as a business man, father, husband you should be playing to provide a future for your family. Reap the rewards while you can because everyone knows that when your “done” you will be cast away like rotten meat. The patriots run a very effective teamW first franchise, that why the win. However I do not fault any player who uses the success of playing for a team like the Pats to further their own earning potential. Patriots acquire guys like Hicks all the time and get the most out of them, what is wrong with the player getting the most $ out of his success with the team?

  30. Look I have huge respect for the Patriots. Whatever they’re doing, it’s been working for almost two decades. Maybe it was just hiring Belicheck. Maybe getting Brady in the 6th round. Maybe ‘organizational synergy’. Maybe they cheat. Maybe it’s all of that, plus other stuff. Whatever it is, nobody else is doing it as well as they are. But it’s not unreasonable for a Patriots role player to be motivated by the chance to make another team great… not just filling a slot on a team that’s already great. I think there are quite a few players who would take equal pay, or even give up a few hundred thousand dollars, and obviously they’ll take more money, for the chance to ‘prove’ they’re ‘the reason’ another team turned around or won a SB. Think of the 1980 Olympics. Noboday would’ve gave a crap about the any of the players on the Russion hockey team if they’d beaten the U.S. and won then won the gold that year. But the U.S. were huge underdogs, and every player from that team is a hero today, decades later, because they scrapped out a win over the Russians and went on to take the gold medal. Ego and narcisism are pretty major factors in the athletes mind.

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