Greg M. Cooper-USA TODAY Sports
1. Devin McCourty
2. Patrick Chung
3. Jordan Richards
4. Duron Harmon
5. Nate Ebner
Cut: Brandon King, Tavon Wilson
Thankfully, the Pats managed to hang on to McCourty, who’s one of the best safeties in the game. The cornerback position may have been substantially degraded this offseason, but at least the Patriots still have D-Mac on patrol in the back end.
Expect the Patriots to use Chung and Richards interchangeably. Both are big hitters, capable of hounding around the box and making stops in the run game. And both are also decent in coverage as long as they aren’t the last line of defense. But that’s alright, since it’s McCourty’s job to make sure nothing gets behind him.
Harmon is better in coverage than both Chung and Richards, so that makes him a pretty valuable component of the secondary. Remember that it was Harmon who sealed the win in the Divisional Round against the Baltimore Ravens.
Ebner is rarely used in set defense, but he is a dependable special teams player and a roster spot will be reserved for him because of it.
I’m afraid these are Wilson’s last days in New England entirely. The practice squad awaits undrafted rookie King, leaving Wilson between a rock and a hard place.
Next: Special teams