3 defensive MVPs for the Patriots after three-quarters of the season
2. Devin McCourty
Devin McCourty had one heck of a start to his season. Considering the 32-year-old was openly contemplating retirement at Opening Night of Super Bowl 53, it’s amazing to think just how much he still has in the tank now in Year 10.
The longtime safety started off the year intercepting a pass in four straight games. The streak ended in Week 5, but he added a fifth interception to his running total against the Jets in Week 7. McCourty’s five picks are tied with Marcus Peters and Minkah Fitzpatrick for the most interceptions by a player in the NFL this season.
Will he have a chance to add to his total? It probably won’t happen this week against the Chiefs’ Patrick Mahomes, who rarely makes costly mistakes with the football. But there’s at least a decent chance McCourty gets his sixth pick of the year when he faces a slew of turnover-prone quarterbacks over the final three games of the season: Andy Dalton, Josh Allen, and Ryan Fitzpatrick.
If McCourty can find a way to two additional picks before the regular season concludes, he’ll tie his career high of seven interceptions, a mark he set all the way back in 2010 during his rookie season when he was still playing cornerback. That might be a bit of a lofty goal and aspiration for a guy who now plays safety, but nothing is impossible with the way D-Mac has been balling out this year.
McCourty is also third on the Patriots in passes defensed behind Jonathan Jones and the guy who takes our No. 1 spot still to come (guess who). And if all this wasn’t enough, he also has both a forced fumble and a fumble recovery on the season as well.
It appears that McCourty – like Tom Brady – may have found the Fountain of Youth. Patriots fans assuredly want him to keep on drinking from that fountain, because it’s done him wonders as an anchor and defensive mainstay patrolling centerfield for Bill Belichick’s exemplary defense.