FOXBORO (CBS) — Devin McCourty isn’t ready to call it a career. The veteran safety is reportedly preparing to come back for a 13th NFL season.

McCourty, 34, is planning on playing in 2022, according to the Providence Journal’s Mark Daniels. McCourty will be coming off offseason surgery, as he recently underwent a minor procedure on his thumb, according to Daniels.

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Now the big question shifts to where McCourty will play in 2022. He has spent his entire career in New England as a cornerstone of the Patriots defense. But his contract will void before the new league year, with a $6.45 million dead cap hit for New England. Should he return to the Patriots, it will most certainly be on a restructured deal.

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Chances are if McCourty wants to finish out his career with the only team he’s ever played for, the Patriots will welcome him back. The team has been getting younger on the defensive side of the ball, and have Kyle Dugger and Adrian Phillips on the depth chart at safety. But with uncertainty surrounding the secondary with J.C. Jackson set to hit free agency, it would probably be wise for the Patriots to keep an important leader like McCourty, who is still playing at a pretty high level.

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The new NFL league year officially kicks off on March 16 at 4 p.m.

CBSBoston.com Staff