By Matt Dolloff, CBS Boston
BOSTON (CBS) — Bill Belichick spoke highly of Brandin Cooks’ work ethic before practice on Friday, day two of Patriots training camp. Later on, the newest Patriots receiver gave some insight into where he got it.
“[Cooks] works hard, pays attention to all of the little details, tries to get things exactly the way we’re coaching them, the way we want to do them. It’s very good,” Belichick said in his Friday presser.
When asked about his work ethic and where he got it, Cooks explained that his mother, Andrea, taught him the value of hard work from the way she raised him.
“[My work ethic] came from my mom, raising three boys on her own, working early mornings, multiple jobs … she didn’t sign up for that – I signed up for football,” Cooks told reporters on Friday. “So if she can do it, I can do it too.”
Cooks’ father, Worth, died of a heart attack when Brandin was just six years old, leaving Andrea to take care of Cooks and his three older brothers, Fred, Worth Jr., and Andre. She worked in a warehouse for hat company Dorfman Pacific and also for an after-school program.
“She dealt with a lot of bad kids,” Cooks said, laughing.
Cooks has spent much of his young career giving back to the woman who raised him, notably gifting Andrea a Mercedes for Mothers Day in 2014:
And in 2015, he bought her a new house and plenty of new amenities to go with it:
Speaking to ESPN’s Mike Reiss for a recent feature story, Andrea praised her son for his maturity and spirituality.
“He always used to tell me, ‘Mamma, I’m going to take care of you,’ even when he was little,” said Andrea. “I have four boys, and he’s my baby. I always tell Brandin he’s a young man but has an old soul. It’s like he’s been here before.
“We had some hard times, but having faith in God, in the end this is what comes out.”
Cooks has previously explained that his bow-and-arrow celebration, a gesture that got Redskins cornerback Josh Norman fined by the NFL during the 2016 season, has religious roots.
The receiver’s tireless faith and hard work have played huge roles in his development into one of the NFL’s best receivers. That’s in large part thanks to the same hard work put in by his mother.
Matt Dolloff is a writer/producer for CBSBostonSports.com. Any opinions expressed do not necessarily reflect those of 98.5 The Sports Hub, CBS, or any subsidiaries. Have a news tip, question, or comment for Matt? Follow him on Twitter @Dolloff985 and email him at firstname.lastname@example.org.