FOXBORO, Mass. — The Devin McCourty watch can come to an end.
New England's star rookie cornerback knew Friday that he had a pretty good chance to play Sunday against the Packers, and the Pro Bowl candidate had a solid game. McCourty missed Wednesday's practice and was limited Thursday and Friday after suffering a rib injury last week in Chicago, but he said he pushed himself hard in Friday's practice to see how he'd hold up.
As it turned out, McCourty played all the way through the Patriots' dramatic 31-27 victory against Green Bay, and the widespread concern over his health can move to the back burner.
"I tried to go out there extra hard just to get a feel for it," McCourty said of Friday's practice. "I felt pretty good, talked to Coach, talked to the doctors, got the go [Sunday]."
McCourty was second on the Patriots with 10 total tackles (seven solo), and he had his first career sack, two tackles for loss and one pass defense.
"I felt pretty good once the adrenaline got going," McCourty said. "Throughout the week, I started feeling better and better, and then after Friday practice, two days off and rest felt, I think, really helped, so I felt really good out there."