Posts Tagged ‘Devin McCourty’

2014 Patriots: Roster Projection 2.0

Tuesday, August 5th, 2014

Whose bubble will burst when the roster cuts are made?

NEPD Editor: Mike Loyko

The first week plus of training camp is already in the books and the roster is still far from a finished product. Jobs aren’t won during the first week of training camp, but they can be lost via lack of production, injury, or other players making the most of their opportunity.

In the Patriots case there hasn’t been a dramatic change in the roster projection. However there are a few minor changes made since the beginning of camp. Here is my 2.0 version of the Patriots projected 2014 roster along with a few thoughts on position battles up to this point.

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Devin McCourty Sees a ‘Model Citizen’ in Fellow Patriots Safety Patrick Chung

Monday, July 28th, 2014

Speaking with reporters after Sunday’s training camp practice at Gillette Stadium, Patriots safety Devin McCourty was effusive in his praise of teammate Patrick Chung. (Photo: Oliver Thomas)

NEPD Editor: Oliver Thomas

Patrick Chung’s return to Foxboro was much quieter than his departure.

But after a challenging season with the Philadelphia Eagles, the 2009 second-round pick is back where his NFL career began as a member of the New England Patriots.

He doesn’t know if he’ll start a game for New England in 2014. He doesn’t know if he’ll be on the 53-man roster come September. Yet the 26-year-old safety does know that his experience in the system, as well as his special teams and his leadership, can be invaluable to the youth around him.

Fifth-year Patriots safety Devin McCourty agrees. (more…)


2014 Patriots Secondary: Revamped and Remarkable

Monday, July 21st, 2014

Devin McCourty has had a great start to his career with the New England Patriots.
(Photo: US Presswire)

NEPD Editor: Mike Loyko

Earthwind Moreland, Troy Brown, Artrell Hawkins, Hank Poteat, Antwaun Molden. These are names fans are used to seeing as they glanced over the Patriots depth chart during the last decade. That’s about to change in 2014.

Over the course of 48 hours in March the Patriots secondary went from a complete liability to strength of the team with the additions of two physical man to man corners in Darrelle Revis and Brandon Browner. On paper, the Patriots have an “embarassment of riches” in the secondary, but how will Bill Belichick use them? Here is what I think we’ll see and why it will make them tough to beat.

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Beyond the Numbers: The Rise of Patriots Safety Devin McCourty

Monday, July 7th, 2014

Once a first-round cornerback, Devin McCourty has emerged as a first-tier NFL safety. (USA Today Sports Images)

NEPD Editor: Oliver Thomas

The initial decision was made on a Thursday evening in April of 2010.

After trading back twice in the first round of the NFL draft, the New England Patriots found themselves on the clock with pick 27 overall. And Rutgers cornerback Devin McCourty found himself waiting for a call.

McCourty carried what the organization was looking for – 52 games of collegiate experience, six career interceptions, 33 career pass deflections, seven blocked punts and kicks, a 4.48-second 40-yard dash and a 6.70-second three-cone drill. Yet the lean, 5’11”, 193-pounder carried other traits as well.

Traits not as easily quantified. (more…)


Assisted Pick: Devin McCourty’s Tip to Marquice Cole Highlights Patriots Comeback Win vs. Dolphins

Monday, October 28th, 2013

Devin McCourty and Marquice Cole combined for a play to remember against Miami in Week 8. (Photo: NFL Game Rewind)

NEPD Editor: Oliver Thomas

“A tale of two halves.”

It may be an overused phrase seen across sports ledes, but it was the story of what transpired at Gillette Stadium on Sunday. The New England Patriots went into halftime down 17-3 to the Miami Dolphins in the Week 8 AFC East battle. Yet through the first 30 minutes, the on-field performance signified a larger disparity than the box score.

The Patriots were stagnant on both sides of the football; the offense had totaled just 25 pass yards while the defense had allowed 103 rush yards. And in the process, right tackle Sebastian Vollmer was lost to a gruesome leg injury, conjuring up the same season-ending reality that claimed defensive tackle Vince Wilfork and linebacker Jerod Mayo.

Just when things hit rock bottom for head coach Bill Belichick and Co. – a booed three-and-out on New England’s opening third-quarter series – fortune switched sides. A sack by New England linebacker Dont’a Hightower snowballed into a missed field goal by Dolphins kicker Caleb Sturgis, and the Patriots responded with a 14-yard touchdown pass from quarterback Tom Brady wide receiver Aaron Dobson. Then, after Miami quarterback Ryan Tannehill was strip-sacked by cornerback Logan Ryan, a two-yard score from running back Brandon Bolden tied the game.

Before the third quarter was over, the Patriots had propelled to a 20-17 advantage by way of a 48-yard field goal by kicker Stephen Gostkowski. The lead would not be relinquished, as New England went on to win, 27-17.

But if there was one play that defined the contrast between the first and second half of the Oct. 27 contest, it took place five snaps into the fourth: the assisted interception. (more…)


One for Safety: Patriots Secondary Shows New Wrinkle vs. Buccaneers in Week 3

Thursday, September 26th, 2013

The Patriots appeared to be in a nickel defense against the Buccaneers, but strong safety Steve Gregory was missing. (Photo: NFL Game Rewind)

NEPD Staff Writer: Oliver Thomas

“We’ve done that in the past. It’s not a big thing.”

Those were the words of New England Patriots head coach Bill Belichick when asked about the defense’s three-cornerback, one-safety display against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in Week 3.

“I think more of that look came against their three-receiver sets,” Belichick added. “So our third corner was with their third receiver. Yeah, it’s just a different matchup for us.”

It was a different matchup for the Patriots secondary. It allowed the defense to maintain a 4-3  front, and it allowed the cornerbacks to ship out in a “nickel” alignment – even though only four defensive backs were on the field at once.

The single-safety personnel grouping was showcased for just six plays in New England’s 23-3 win over Tampa Bay, but its implementation alone was enough to draw attention.

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Defensive Continuity the Key to Patriots 2013 Success

Tuesday, July 23rd, 2013
Devin McCourty Patriots Safety

Devin McCourty and the “old look” Patriots defense could shine in 2013. (USA Today Sports Images)

NEPD Editor: Mike Loyko

2007 changed everything for the Patriots. A team built on defense and a reliable offense in crunch time morphed into a high-powered, record breaking air attack with the acquisitions of Randy Moss and Wes Welker.

While exciting to watch and dominating for long stretches the 2007 season, it changed the Patriots philosophy on how to win football games. It became less about the defense and more about points on the scoreboard.

For the first time since 2007 the Patriots will have the opportunity to return to their championship philosophy and once again become a defense first team.

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