England star Mike Brown is unfazed by Eddie Jones' mind games ahead of Six Nations opener
Those mind games are a waste of time with Mike Brown.
For starters, Brown is the only specialist full-back in the narrowed-down squad named by Jones last night for England's opening game of the Six Nations against France, so he does not need to be the sharpest tool in the box to work out he will be named in the starting line-up tomorrow.
But maintaining motivation levels for Brown will never be an issue whatever the circumstances – they are permanently set on the red line.
While there may be a temptation with other players who have a guaranteed spot to rest easy, England's Mr Angry is simply not wired that way.
He may have reached 55 caps, he may be the only candidate for the No15 jersey, but at 31 he is as ferociously determined heading into the championship as when he made his England debut 10 years ago.
Jones has left his players guessing with the team he will select to face France
"For me the competition's in my head. I'm not the kind of player that gets complacent. I'm massively competitive so it doesn't matter if there are 10 full-backs in camp or just myself," he said.
"I'm always looking to get better. That's why coaches like me as a player. I'm a driven person. I'll push myself until the day I no longer play. I'm just carrying on the way I have been for however many years.
"For me it's harder to switch off. Even in off-season I think I'm being lazy if I'm not doing something. I'm always thinking about my rugby and what I need to do, what I should be doing, what I ought to be doing; what Eddie is thinking, what the coaches are thinking. It's always going on in my head.
"I think that's good, it keeps me on my toes, it keeps me striving to achieve what I want to achieve.
"I guess it can be exhausting but it goes back to loving what you do and I do love what I do. For me, it's the best job in the world and the enjoyment comes out of getting the best from myself I possibly can. I wouldn't change the way I am for the world."
Brown taking a catch during an England training session
There have been many more naturally talented full-backs – some of whom will play against him in this championship – but Brown bridges the gap with a competitive streak as wide as the Nile.
It invades his every moment. The England squad have recently started training their eyes with vision coach Sherylle Calder in an attempt, among other things, to improve depth perception and spatial awareness.
The computer drills, which involve sifting shapes and numbers in reaction and memory tests, are conducted alone but Brown is first to the results list.
"There's a leaderboard every week. I was fourth last week out of 14 backs. I'll start there and try and get better," he said.
"Alex Lozowski was top last week; Ben Te'o very much bottom. I enjoy it when he's bottom of the list. He hates it. That's the best bit. He doesn't like getting hammered by anyone. It's always good fun when he's at the bottom." With Brown, it is always about the contest.
Six Nations 2016 in pictures
Sun, March 20, 2016
Express Sport brings you the best pictures from the 2016 RBS Six Nations Championship
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Express Sport brings you all the best pictures from the 2016 Six Nations Championship, where England achieved their first Grand Slam since 2003
He was shaped by struggle. Growing up in Hampshire, he did not attend a rugby-playing school and had to leapfrog the silver spoons to make the England age group side.
When he broke into the Harlequins first team, his first taste of senior club rugby for the fallen aristocrats was being assaulted on a weekly basis in the Championship.
And with England, he suffered worse than most when the World Cup went pear-shaped. He could not sleep properly for a week afterwards.
It was instructive to observe Brown in the aftermath of the exit. As the flak was flying for captain and coach, he was the one telling his teammates they each had to look at themselves because not one of them was fit to make a World XV.
How many are now? If you listen to Jones, none still, but as a collective there is a relentlessness to their march. Unbeaten in 15 months, England have seemingly forgotten how to lose.
With such a record comes the danger of complacency but if they need a security guard to keep it out, they have the ideal man on hand.
"If one person was to get complacent that would be stamped out very quickly," said Brown. "We know what it looks like, we know what can happen if it comes in to one person – it will breed so we're very much on that. That will not be accepted in this group so I don't think there's any danger of that."