N’Keal Harry’s background:
The New England Patriots drafted N’Keal Harry in the 2019 NFL Draft. Harry had a lot of promise and upsides heading into the NFL. N’Keal was the second wide receiver taken behind Baltimore’s Marquise Brown. N’Keal compiled 213 receptions, 2889 receiving yards, and 22 touchdowns in his three years at Arizona State.
Rocky first season in the NFL:
N’Keal Harry did not live up to the first-round status in his rookie campaign last season. In addition, injuries plagued his first year and forced him to miss half the season. Therefore Harry only played in seven games in 2019, racking up 105 receiving yards adding 2 touchdowns. Former New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady had trust issues with the wide receiver corps including Harry last year.
COVID-19 fulfilled NFL season:
The 2020 NFL season has been a whirlwind like no other football season. In other words, N’Keal had no preseason to work on his mechanics and to see what kind of shape he would be in heading into the regular season. All we got to see is how he was performing in training camp and that’s it. The season began with him being the clear cut #2 wideout on the team behind Julian Edelman. N’Keal had his best game of the season In Week 2 against the Seattle Seahawks with his 8 receptions and 72 receiving yards. Outside of that game against Seattle he has been a non-factor in the offense. He suffered a concussion In Week 6 loss to the San Francisco 49ers. Harry has returned since from the injury, but still hasn’t contributed much on the field.
Route running ability/catching:
N’Keal Harry needs to get better at running routes in the NFL. It just seems like every time he is running routes, he isn’t the intended receiver or you see him blocking for his teammates. As a result, Harry has caused the team penalties in recent weeks and not producing in the receiving game. In the game against the Houston Texans In Week 11, N’Keal caused two penalties and only having 5 receptions and 41 receiving yards in that contest. Cam Newton needs to have more faith in throwing to him and hoping he can make a big play.
N’Keal career hasn’t quite taken off as many expected it to do. In his first two seasons, there has been a similarity. He had missed most of his first season and in his second year more of the same. The Patriots should have a building cast around him by drafting other wide receivers. However offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels needs to get N’Keal the ball more. With more playing time, Harry should perform at a high level and become explosive in the passing game with the right man throwing him the ball. In conclusion, Patriots fans have mixed emotions about N’Keal, give him some more time to develop into the player he was supposed to be.