Pats CB McCourty makes transition to safety
FOXBORO, Mass. (WHDH) -- Devin McCourty knows how to make plays; he made enough his rookie year to go to the Pro Bowl. But since then, he’s struggled to find a rhythm at cornerback -- although like last year, injuries have forced McCourty over to safety, which seems to have helped stabilize the secondary.
“Dev’s a great athlete. He understands football. He’s a smart football player. He understands what we’re trying to do as a defense,” said Steve Gregory, safety.
“He’s a good tackler. He’s fast, he’s instinctive. He has a good feel for the game wherever you put him,” said Bill Belichick, Patriots head coach.
Even though McCourty gave up some big plays at cornerback, he was almost always in the right position -- he just had trouble turning and locating the ball. But those ball skills may not be so much of an issue at safety, because everything should be in front of him.
“You get used to seeing more of the field and I think you have more of a responsibility, since you have that viewpoint, to let everyone else know. Cause I know when you play corner it’s not as easy to see,” McCourty said.
On the surface, one may see the switch as a disadvantage -- but that’s not how Vince Wilfork sees it.
“You give your team a better edge because you can move that guy from corner to safety to a money position. Wherever you feel fit for him because he knows the game in and out,” said Wilfork.