Alabama in the Pros

Patriots’ RB Damien Harris created attention at mandatory minicamp

© Trevor Ruszkowski - USA TODAY Sports

The 2019 National Football League regular season will be here soon, but all 32 teams must first go through mandatory training camp. Head coach Bill Belichick and the New England Patriots ended its three-day session of minicamp last week, and had two rookies that created attention. 

According to Patriots.com, the team has been impressed with Damien Harris. 

A former University of Alabama standout, Harris was picked in the third round (No. 87 pick) of this year’s NFL Draft. In four years at running back, the Kentucky native had 3,070 yards rushing — good for eighth all-time – and recorded two 1,000-yard seasons in 2016 and 2017. 

Harris led the Crimson Tide in rushing in 2018 with 876 yards and nine touchdowns, assisting the school to a Southeastern Conference title.

He separated himself at the NFL Combine by placing among the top backs in each workout – including a strong 40-time of 4.57 seconds. 

RELATED: How much pressure is mounted on Kirby Smart to beat Alabama in 2019?

While it carries four backs on its roster, the Patriots see big potential in Harris. 

Per the article, he looked comfortable running between the tackles and catches passes out the backfield as a receiver. Harris does possess the ability to make explosive plays and he was natural in pass protection.

The 5-foot-10, 216-pounder is competing against Sony Michel, James White, Brandon Bolden and Rex Burkhead, yet he is making an impact on his teammates. Training camp starts next month and if Harris continues this progress, he has an opportunity to carve out a nice rookie campaign.  

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Stephen M. Smith is the managing editor and senior writer for Touchdown Alabama Magazine.  You can “like” him on Facebook or “follow” him on Twitter, via @CoachingMSmith.

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