It's been a strange eight days for Patriots fans, who have seen core players like Kyle Van Noy, Jamie Collins, Duron Harmon and, of course, Tom Brady leave New England since free agency began last Wednesday.
But how do you think Devin McCourty feels?
The 32-year-old safety re-signed with the Patriots on a two-year contract on March 15, back when all four of those players still were on the team.
McCourty admitted Thursday it made things a bit awkward when those teammates left one by one after he committed to return.
"I was kind of expecting to be able to sign back and be on a team with a lot of guys that I am used to playing with and thought I was kind of turning down a new opportunity and fresh start," McCourty told WEEI's "The Greg Hill Show."
"I kind of got that coming back. Sometimes it is ironic, you think you know what you're doing, but you really don't and it gives you a fresh new start and an opportunity to do something a little different."
McCourty wrote in a recent Players' Tribune article that he nearly left New England because he was ready for a change. But his twin brother (cornerback Jason McCourty) staying with the Patriots convinced him to stay, too -- and he'll get some of that change anyway with a new-look roster that's Brady-less for the first time in 20 years.
McCourty also admitted it was difficult losing players he was so close with, especially safety Duron Harmon, who was traded to the Detroit Lions. The Patriots captain won't have that much of a soft spot for his ex-teammates, though.
"I am happy for (Brady) and all the guys who are going playing new opportunities in new areas," McCourty said. "As long as when we play them we beat those teams, I am happy for them."
Devin McCourty explains irony behind his new contract with Patriots originally appeared on NBC Sports Boston