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Patriots' FS McCourty not sure what to expect with new secondary coming in

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FOXBOROUGH, Massachusetts — Devin McCourty was asked if he was surprised Darrelle Revis left the New England Patriots to return to the New York Jets.

"Who?" the Patriots' free safety said with a laugh on Tuesday. "Revis?"

Asked if he's no longer allowed to mention the cornerback's name because he's no longer with the team, McCourty simply said, "We're still friends.

The Super Bowl champions are moving ahead without Revis and Brandon Browner, who was allowed to leave and signed with the New Orleans Saints.

Meanwhile, McCourty has a new five-year contract worth $42.5 million, $28.5 guaranteed.

What remains at cornerback are returnees including Logan Ryan and Super Bowl hero Malcolm Butler, plus free agents Bradley Fletcher, Chimdi Chekwa and Robert McClain.

"I guess right now we don't know what it's going to be," said McCourty, at Gillette Stadium for the team's OTA's. "I'm always confident in the hard work we'll put in, but I'd be lying if I came out here and said I know we're going to be great. Same way last year when we all got together - we didn't know what to expect."

This group has to be more unknown than a depth chart that read Revis and Browner, the latter sitting out the first four games with an NFL suspension.

"We gotta put the work in now," said McCourty, a defensive captain. "We'll grow as the process goes on once we get on the practice field for OTA's and we'll start practicing and doing things like that. That's where you put the work in and you give yourself a chance to be a good secondary and a good defense."

He's ready for people to step up.

"I'm excited for all those (young) guys. They've put in a lot of work. I was in Arizona (working out) with Lo (Ryan) for a little while. Since I met him when he was a freshman in college (both at Rutgers), he's always one of the guys that's always going to in there outing in extra work trying to get better," said McCourty.

"I think Malcolm is a guy who came in last year not knowing really anything to expect and then making a great play in the Super Bowl. I think it's exciting for him. For all those guys - when you're young in the NFL I think you just want to learn as much as you can and just get better year in and year out."

NOTES: The Patriots will visit the White House on Thursday, special teams captain Matthew Slater calling it "a tremendous experience to go to the White House and meet the president." He added, "This kind of closes the book on 2014." . Both players were asked about quarterback recent Tom Brady's cliff diving in Costa Rica, McCourty saying, "I thought that was cool. Tom's got, what, four Super Bowls? You gotta live on the edge to win that many. He's having fun. He's a great swimmer, I guess. I wouldn't have jumped - I can't swim."


Online: AP NFL website: http://www.pro32.ap.org and http://www.twitter.com/AP_NFL

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