Perhaps no one flew in under the radar as quietly as Broncos’ cornerback Chris Harris last season.
Coming into the league as an undrafted rookie out of Kansas, Harris played in all 16 games and racked up an astonishing 71 tackles, 1 interception, and 6 pass deflections. Not bad for a guy who was the bottom of the depth chart during training camp, and didn’t see any action in the team’s first preseason game against Dallas.
Just because Harris is in his second year doesn’t mean that things will necessarily get easier for him. The Broncos brought in Tracey Porter and Drayton Florence to help Champ Bailey out at right corner.
“I understood that,” Harris said of the team bringing in some veterans to replace Andre Goodman. “I’m still an undrafted free agent, and everything is going to be ten times harder for me.”
Harris excels at the nickel position, saying “They know I know the nickel. I know that so easy, I knew it coming in.” However, he’s been lining up more outside during OTA’s.
OTA’s are more about understanding concepts and running through coverage schemes at a slower pace. Once the pads come on in training camp, Harris admittedly turns into a different player.
“I know once we get the pads on, I turn into different player,” Harris said. “I’m going to be all over the field. I’m going to make tackles, you won’t catch me missing any tackles.”
As for Harris’s rapid emergence into the league, he could have an equally fast rising as a second year player thanks to the Broncos new starting quarterback.
“The stuff that we’ve seen with Peyton (Manning), I’ve never seen,” Harris said. “The intelligence that he brings to the field is different that what we’ve seen all year last year other than when we played Tom Brady.”
Manning could be Harris biggest asset, and in turn, Harris could become one of the Broncos’ biggest playmakers.