The New England Patriots dropped their Week 1 game against the Miami Dolphins to the tune of a gutting 17-16 defeat.
The Patriots nearly started the Mac Jones era on a winning note, but a Damien Harris fumble with less than four minutes remaining in regulation put the nail in the coffin. A couple of first downs later and Miami lined up in victory formation.
The good news is that the Patriots already look more competitive than they did last season.
While Jones obviously had a lot to do with that, the defense limited the Dolphins to just 259 yards of offense.
New England also won the time of possession battle by nearly 13 (!) minutes. Without the turnovers, they start the year with a win.
You know what makes the loss sting even more, though? Former Patriots defensive back Jason McCourty was spotted celebrating the big win.
Former Patriots DB Jason McCourty was pumped after his Dolphins won Sunday’s rivalry game.
Doesn’t make you feel good. However, can Patriots fans really blame McCourty for expressing his emotion? What else is he supposed to do? It’s not like he ran over and celebrated in front of New England’s sideline.
What’s wrong with McCourty showing some excitement on his way the Dolphins’ locker room? The answer is nothing. We understand if some Patriots fans feel a certain way about it. After all, McCourty spent the previous three seasons with New England, making 33 starts and winning his first Super Bowl in 2018.
However, let’s not forget that McCourty wanted to re-sign with the Patriots in free agency this past offseason. The 34-year-old didn’t have what you would call a ceremonious departure from the franchise.
In fact, when he was still searching for a new home, he took a subtle shot at the Pats, saying, “I just want to be somewhere I’m wanted.”
So, yeah, McCourty wanted to celebrate.
Put yourself in his shoes. The team McCourty spent the last three years with went on the biggest free agent spending spree in its history and seemingly didn’t even consider re-signing him. You would take that personally, too.
McCourty also turned in a strong performance in his Dolphins debut, racking up five tackles (four solo) and a pass breakup while playing 99% of the snaps.
Yes, it’s a Patriots’ rival, but McCourty is part of a new team and culture — one that just picked up a huge Week 1 win on the road.
It’d be weird if he wasn’t celebrating.