With the NFL’s free agency compensation window closing last week, the veteran market has seen some movement recently. Among the players who left the open market by signing a new deal is cornerback Jason McCourty: after three years with the New England Patriots, the 33-year-old will wear a Miami Dolphins uniform moving forward.
With him now headed to South Beach, McCourty took to social media to pen his final goodbye to his previous team. In a post titled “Dear New England” that was captioned with the statement “Don’t cry because it’s over, smile because it happened,” the team captain wrote about his time with the Patriots and playing alongside his twin brother, fellow defensive back Devin McCourty:
Thank you to RKK and Coach [Belichick] for giving me a chance to wear the Patriots uniform. For the past three seasons I’ve gotten a chance to live out a childhood dream, playing alongside my brother while winning a championship and building lifelong friendships. Thank you to everyone within the New England Patriots organization. I will miss the conversations with Ms. Martha at the security box on my way into the facility, my laughs with Ms. Paula in the dining room and countless others...
Pats Nation, thank you for welcoming me with open arms. It was not only a privilege to compete alongside my teammates but also to serve the New England community through organizations and causes that I hold dear. New England will always be a special place for myself and my family! But the journey is not over. With that said I got my sun screen ready and I’ve already started hydrating! 305 BABY!!!
After starting his career with the Tennessee Titans and Cleveland Browns, McCourty found his way to New England in 2018. The Browns, fresh off a 0-16 season, had already announced his release when the Patriots called to offer a minor draft pick swap to obtain his services. Cleveland agreed, allowing McCourty to join his twin brother in the New England secondary.
The move paid major dividends: McCourty went on to appear in a combined 47 regular season and playoff games over the next three seasons, established himself as a leader both on and off the field, and made one of the pivotal plays in the Patriots’ victory over the Los Angeles Rams in Super Bowl 53.
Be it as a playmaker in the secondary or a leader in the locker room, McCourty has undoubtably left his mark on the organization during his tenure. And even though he will now continue his career elsewhere, it seems as if it also left its mark on him.
The full statement released from the McCourty Twins’ shared Twitter account looks as follows: