Patriots bust N'Keal Harry changes positions on Vikings to save NFL career

Minnesota Vikings v Chicago Bears
Minnesota Vikings v Chicago Bears / Michael Reaves/GettyImages

Bill Belichick was known for many things throughout his illustrious NFL career, like being a winner, an encyclopedia of the game, an old-school and tough coach, and more. But one of the smudges on his resumé was his less-than-stellar draft record, which became more problematic after Tom Brady was no longer around.

The quarterback had been able to hide the inefficiencies of the offense for many years, making it easy to forget about the unfavorable draft selections that Belichick had brought to the team.

But it didn't always work out that way, and one of the more recent draft busts continues to live in infamy despite being traded two years ago.

N'Keal Harry was a first-round draft pick out of ASU in 2019. He had a promising college career in Arizona, and it looked like he had the makings of a solid receiver to make the pros, but he was not a player who would be taken so high on draft night.

Hopes were high for the young receiver upon joining the team, and although he had a rough rookie year, it wasn't atypical. So expectations increased the following year, yet not much changed. That continued into his third season, and his usage decreased rapidly to the point that Harry even requested a trade via his agent before the start of the 2021 season.

Belichick convinced him to stay, but Harry remained sidelined or unable to make plays when given opportunities. He was eventually traded the following year to the Bears, playing one season there, and is now on the Vikings roster.

Because he's fallen from grace since being drafted, he's making a last-ditch effort to save his NFL career with an interesting position change ahead of the 2024 season.

Patriots bust N'Keal Harry changes positions on Vikings to save NFL career

News broke earlier this week that Harry was working as a tight end in practices this offseason to determine if he could be more successful in that role. The Vikings already have a solid receiving corps led by Justin Jefferson and Jordan Addison, so Harry would be further down the depth chart anyway.

And moving the 6'4" 225 lbs. receiver to a position traditionally performed by players of his size or bigger makes a lot of sense, while also giving him another chance to salvage what he might have left to continue an NFL career

This is also a smart decision by the Vikings, who could benefit from adding another tight end to the roster. T.J. Hockenson is coming off a late-season ACL and MCL tear, so his return to the field is questionable for early in the season. Utilizing Harry, along with Robert Tonyan and others, could ultimately benefit the offense, especially for rookie quarterback J.J. McCarthy.

It is an ample opportunity for Harry to turn his career around and break away from the bust label he's dealt with over the last few years.

Unfortunately, that will be forever immortalized in New England culture due to who Belichick chose to pass on in favor of selecting him in 2019: A.J. Brown, D.K. Metcalf, and Deebo Samuel, just to name a few.

This might be his last chance, and hopefully, he can make the best of it.

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