“With the president having so many strong opinions and prejudices I believe certain people might feel accepted there while others won't,” McCourty added.
It's been well-documented that many in the Patriots organization have a strong friendship with President Trump, so that automatically makes this a big deal. But the organization respects players' beliefs.
It's also not the first time a Boston athlete has missed a White House visit. Tom Brady skipped it in 2015, and Tim Thomas of the Bruins skipped it in 2011.