The Patriots made a move this week to ensure they’ll have one of their captains back in the fold for 2022, with Devin McCourty returning for at least one more season.
His return keeps some continuity in their secondary after McCourty had initially been floating the idea of retirement early in the offseason but he’s back after reportedly signing a one-year, $9-million contract.
His return is big for a group that has already seen J.C. Jackson depart in free agency after getting a big payday out in Los Angeles with the Chargers. With Jackson departing, the Patriots will likely be targeting players this offseason to try and add depth to a group that dealt with injuries, along with losing one of their key players in Stephon Gilmore after the club dealt him in a midseason trade.
McCourty’s steady presence and leadership role have been key for a defensive backfield that will be looking to improve on an inconsistent 2021 season, with McCourty likely playing an important role in helping whoever comes in this offseason get acclimated to New England’s defense.
The veteran safety’s return rounds out a safety group that remains solid heading into this season after the Patriots extended Adrian Phillips late during the 2021 campaign, while Kyle Dugger also had an outstanding year in his second season with the club.
They’ll also add some youth to this year’s group, with reports on Joshuah Bledsoe having been positive. Bledsoe spent much of last year recovering from an injury but he’s expected to be among players to watch during training camp.
McCourty was originally selected in the first round of the 2010 NFL draft out of Rutgers and has spent his entire career with the Patriots. Despite the fact he’ll turn 35 on August 13th, he’s lost little in terms of his athleticism and remains one of New England’s most consistent players on defense.
Posted Under: Patriots News