Devin McCourty

Devin McCourty on Patriots offseason workouts: 'It's like the first day of school'

Devin McCourty on Patriots offseason workouts: 'It's like the first day of school'

Just over two months after winning their sixth Super Bowl of the millennium, the New England Patriots returned to action on Monday. It was the first day of their offseason workout program.

While not all of the Patriots were there -- Michael Bennett and Tom Brady were the notable absences -- a good chunk of the team was.

Long-time Patriots defensive back Devin McCourty was among the veterans on hand and seemed excited to be back on the job. He spoke about returning in an interview that the Patriots posted on Twitter.

I think any time you come back this time of year, it's like the first day of school. Obviously, we've had a lot of changes, but (we're) just getting acclimated to that and getting ready to roll.

The Patriots will continue to undergo the changes McCourty referenced in the coming weeks, as the 2019 NFL Draft will take place next week. The Patriots have 12 picks and are expected to add some offensive weapons, as they have done plenty of work on receivers and tight ends ahead of the draft.

In addition to McCourty's comments, starting center David Andrews also weighed in on the return to the team and expressed a similar sentiment to his teammate. He's excited, and the team is hungry for success.

Just keep your head down, keep working, take it day by day. You know, that's why we all do this. We love the game of football. We love to compete. You know, that's fun and that's what makes up the team I think.

Part of why the Patriots have been so good for so long is their penchant to find hard-working players that love the grind. If this interview is any indication, the attitude of the team hasn't changed.

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Devin, Jason McCourty to make commencement speech at Rutgers graduation

Devin, Jason McCourty to make commencement speech at Rutgers graduation

Devin McCourty and his twin brother, Jason, became Super Bowl champions together for the first time last season.

On Tuesday, they garnered another impressive honor.

The New England Patriots defensive backs will deliver the 253rd commencement address at Rutgers University on May 19, the school announced.

The McCourty twins also will receive honorary degrees from their alma mater, and needless to say, they're pretty pumped about the opportunity.

Both brothers arrived at Rutgers in 2005, but Devin redshirted that year and graduated in 2010 with a degree in psychology, while Jason graduated in 2009 with a degree in information technology.

In addition to both being successful NFL players, the McCourty twins have made their mark on Rutgers through their charitable efforts. They've collaborated extensively with the New Jersey-based charity Embrace Kids Foundation to help fight sickle cell anemia and actually will participate in the Heel to Heal Plus Tackle Sickle Cell 5K later in the day of their commencement speech.

The Patriots kick off organized team activities on May 20, so it will be a busy 24 hours for the McCourty brothers. Not that they're complaining, of course.

"Returning to Rutgers now is certainly humbling and we’re grateful for the opportunity," Jason said in a statement. "We hope to deliver a message that will inspire the Class of 2019 to chase their own vision of success.”

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Bill Belichick's Top 20 shrewdest draft trades

Bill Belichick's Top 20 shrewdest draft trades

No team has more than draft picks in this month's draft than the Patriots, who own 12 selections, including six in the first 101 picks.

But don't expect Bill Belichick to come out of the draft with a dozen new players. Since Belichick took over in Foxboro, no team has trafed more picks during the draft than the Pats.

How many? Try a whopping 71 deals, including eight last year, tying the high-water mark they set way back in 2003. Sometimes the Patriots package picks and move up; sometimes they trade down and add capital in future drafts.

But over the years, all of those swaps have yielded a host of Pro Bowlers and cogs of future Super Bowl championship teams.

Tom E. Curran has looked back at all the trades and ranks Belichick's 20 shrewdest draft deals.

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