Chase Winovich motivated by chocolate and a five dollar bill
New England Patriots rookie Chase Winovich says his grandmother incentivizes him to play well by rewarding him with five bucks and a chocolate candy bar.
You may have thought that 24-year-old rookie defensive end Chase Winovich was a nice guy.
He never did anything scandalous or unbecoming during five years at the University of Michigan. He has maintained an appropriately modest and low profile since being drafted by the Patriots, transforming himself from one of the more outspoken voices in collegiate athletics and into a blue-collar, hard-working rookie who keeps his mouth shut.
You may have thought you knew Chase Winovich and what he was all about; and you would have thought wrong.
Because Chase Winovich is actually a Viking-haired mercenary… with a sweet tooth.
According to USA Today’s Henry McKenna, the driving force behind Winovich’s career ascension and continuing improvements as a professional football player has everything to do with the proper use of motivation. Long, long ago, his grandmother figured out just what kind of motivation worked best for the young man: chocolate and cold, hard cash.
“Ever since high school, my grandma has been promising me, if I played hard and I didn’t get hurt, she’s been promising me $5 and a chocolate bar, either Hershey’s or Sarris Candies,” Winovich told reporters after the Patriots’ preseason victory over the Tennessee Titans on Saturday. “So today was just another day where I just went out there and I said, ‘You know what, I’ve got to play hard. I need that $5, and I need the candy.’”
“Need” is an interesting word-choice, no doubt. According to Spotrac, Winovich’s rookie deal has him set to earn $3.8 million over the course of four years. Assuming the average price of a Hershey’s chocolate bar is somewhere around $2, he could buy himself about 475,000 bars a year with that kind of money.
So it’s hard to believe Winovich really “needs” that $5, just as it’s doubtful he really “needs” that tasty treat in his life either. (What would the New England training staff and nutritionists have to say about such sugary comments???)
All jokes aside, it’s touching and also hilarious to hear that Winovich’s grandmother has maintained such a long-running tradition with her grandson. Even now that Winovich is in the NFL, it sounds as if they have the kind of bond that goes far beyond financial parameters or differing qualities of life.
Patriots fans, meanwhile, will no doubt have a field day with this story. It’s easy to imagine all manner of homemade signs finding their way into Gillette Stadium, urging Winovich to rack up sacks, tackles, and big plays in the hopes of earning a fresh five dollar bill and a chocolate bar from ‘Granny’ after the game. We could even see the beginning of a new player/candy tradition – a la Marshawn Lynch and Skittles – if Winovich continues to show Hershey’s and Sarris chocolate both this much love.
One thing’s for certain: Grandma’s motivational tactics have so far translated well to the NFL for Winovich. After piling up three tackles and 1.5 sacks in Week 1 of the preseason against the Detroit Lions, Winovich was even better in Week 2 against the Titans, finishing with six tackles (two of them for loss) and one sack on the night.