FOXBOROUGH, Mass. -- Patriots receiver Chad Ochocinco disputed thoughts that he’s having a tough time transitioning into the offense.
“I’ve heard small little rumblings that I haven’t caught on yet,” Ochocinco told reporters Tuesday. “I’m doing just fine. I’m not sure why or how it is, but coming from any place where you’ve been 10 years, to come here and learn the verbiage and learn as much as I have the past three weeks, I’ve done extremely well. It’s been fun, it’s been enjoyable.”
In terms of reaching a point where he is completely relaxed on the field, Ochocinco rated himself a "7" on a scale of 1 to 10.
“Right now, I’m able to go out and react; as soon as I hear Tommy [Brady] call something, I’m good, I’m set. But I’m still not in that comfort zone where I can just be me, somewhat exhale and ‘It’s on, let’s play.’ I think it’s my third week. Let’s be realistic. This is the highest level of football and this is not easy. ...
“I’m just nowhere near where I want to be," he added. “I’m my biggest critic anyway. Regardless of what you write or what you guys see, I’m the first to judge myself. I’m always aiming for perfection. One of those things about being here, in an organization like this that prides itself on perfection and excellence, I’m sort of putting the pressure on myself to be right and be perfect now. Not later. I’m trying to squeeze everything within a shorter time frame. If I can aim to be as perfect as possible, I think I’ll get up to speed.”
Asked if he's OK with daily appraisals of his work from media members, Ochocinco said he understands that comes with the territory.
“I like that. You guys have a job to do. You’re not my friends, you guys have a job to do and I understand that. I want you guys to critique the hell of me, as I can also do to you. I hold no grudges, but as you fire upon me, believe, I will fire back,” he said. “... High profile, flashy, flamboyant players coming in, [you're] supposed to come in a certain way, point blank. There is no room. I understand that. I know you’re all going to kill me, especially here. Boston loves their sports. If I’m [expletive] up, you’re going to get me.”
Ochocinco insisted that he is not frustrated.
“Frustration is a waste of time, a waste of energy. I’ll be there. I’ll be there a lot faster than I’m supposed to be,” he said. “Especially with as much verbiage as I had to learn in such a short period of time; if there was an offseason program I would have been here for a 13-to-18 week period to learn the offense. Everything is crammed in to a short time, and I’m doing the best I can.”