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Thursday, November 3, 2011
McCourty on secondary changes

By Mike Reiss

Patriots cornerback Devin McCourty, one of the team’s defensive captains, spoke with reporters this morning in the media workroom. The theme was change.

There has been a lot of change within the Patriots’ secondary, making McCourty – in just his second season – one of the constants. Some analysts point to the change, which includes the release of veteran cornerback Leigh Bodden, as a reason for the struggles of the secondary.

McCourty doesn’t necessarily see it that way, though.

“I really don’t think that’s important. I think we have a group of guys here that can get the job done, and I think it’s our job to just go out there work at it,” he said.

“You just keep playing. Just because you don’t always see guys on the game field, guys have been out here practicing and got those reps out on the practice field. When you’re in the meeting room, we’re communicating with guys and that’s where you try to build that trust, and that communication on the field, in meeting rooms and walkthroughs.”

The always-important communication has been a point of emphasis this week after breakdowns in Pittsburgh.

“Sometimes you just need reminders – keep attacking that aspect of the game,” McCourty said. “Our focus right now is just getting better. At times, we’re making strides. At times, we’re falling a little short. I think our goal is to keep getting better and be more consistent.”

As for the Giants, McCourty shared thoughts on what he sees from quarterback Eli Manning.

“I think he’s a guy who makes a lot of throws on the field, and when you watch their offense, they are never really in a bad situation. He’s a smart quarterback that is able to check them into good situations, good plays, against whatever he sees out there on the field. As a team, you have to be ready to play all-around – with the run game, with [Ahmad] Bradshaw – and then they have a bunch of good receivers that can make plays.”