NFC Links: McCourty, Bridgewater, Packers

Devin McCourty ultimately stayed with the Patriots, but not before being lured by the NFL’s largest market. The Giants‘ offer was comparable to what McCourty ended up signing to stay in New England — five years, $47.5MM — co-owner John Mara told Jeff Howe of the Boston Herald.

The best safety on the market’s refusal to take the Giants’ money began a failed venture that leaves the team with one of the most barren depth charts at any position in the league with the draft less than six weeks away. As of now, the Giants have only Nat Berhe and Cooper Taylor, fifth-round picks in 2013 and 2014, respectively, on their roster. Neither has started a game. Former Giants starters Stevie Brown and Quintin Demps still reside in free agency.

Other news from the NFC …

  • Like the Steelers, the Packers are a staunch build-from-within franchise, and this year furthered that philosophy. As a result, corners Tramon Williams and Davon House departed, and coach Mike McCarthy expects Casey Hayward and former Gonzaga basketball talent Demetri Goodson to challenge for those spots, reports Tom Silverstein of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. Unless Carl Bradford or another player enables Clay Matthews to relocate to his former spot outside, the Pro Bowl linebacker may stay an inside linebacker going into the season.
  • Packers president Mark Murphy doesn’t expect the Bears’ proposal of both teams receiving a guaranteed overtime possession to pass, reports ESPN’s Jason Wilde. Murphy probably won’t support any of the rules changes, reports Silverstein on Twitter.
  • Vikings coach Mike Zimmer wants Teddy Bridgewater to gain weight and develop additional strength before he begins his first full season as the Vikings’ quarterback, writes Sid Hartman of the Minneapolis Star Tribune. Zimmer said the 2014 first-rounder played at around 210 pounds last season, and the second-year coach prefers the 6-foot-2 signal-caller to be closer to 220.
  • After reports surfaced of Adrian Peterson‘s agent declining a Vikings meeting, the All-Pro runner didn’t solicit much of a response from Zimmer. “Well, Adrian is under contract with us, and we’re excited to get him back here with his teammates and get him back playing,” Zimmer told Hartman.
  • The NFL held its first Veterans Combine on Sunday night in Arizona with numerous former NFLers participating. The Eagles were among the few teams to talk with offensive linemen after their drills concluded,’s Mark Sessler reports on Twitter.
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