New England Patriots safety Devin McCourty went after the NFL for pushing forward the opt-out deadline, Sunday.

Devin McCourty, Deadline, Opt-OutKathryn Riley / Getty Images

"I think it is an absolute joke that the NFL is changing the opt-out period, mainly because they don't want to continue to see guys opt out. I'm sure they're shocked about how many guys have opted out," McCourty told Patriots reporters, according to ESPN. "I think it's terrible. I think it's B.S. that the league has changed that date."

A firm deadline has not been confirmed, but Adam Schefter reports that the NFL is moving the opt-out deadline from one week after the new collective bargaining agreement side letter is signed to as early as this Wednesday.

"Monday will be our first day in the building, so to try to act like guys are trying to make a decision about something other than virtual meetings is a joke," McCourty continued. "When players understand how much power we have, we've seen things change for us; primarily even with this deal, with the COVID-19 and trying to get everything back, we saw some of that strength. Hopefully, we'll see how everything turns out, come Wednesday, if it ends up being the deadline."

Patriots star linebacker Dont'a Hightower is opting out of the 2020 season.