A year after he requested a trade, the Patriots have finally granted N’Keal Harry his wish.
The Pats traded Harry to the Bears for a 2024 seventh-round pick Thursday, a source confirmed to the Herald. The former first-round pick finishes his New England tenure as one of the biggest draft busts of the Bill Belichick era. After being selected in 2019, Harry managed just 57 receptions for 598 yards and four touchdowns over three seasons.
Harry ran with the scout-team offense in last month’s minicamp, a long shot to make this year’s roster.
Last summer, Harry’s agent, Jamal Tooson, took a trade request public in an effort to jump-start his client’s career after two subpar seasons. The Patriots kept Harry, whom Belichick believed last August would “make a big contribution” to the team. Harry finished with 12 catches for 184 yards and zero touchdowns.
FOXBOROUGH, MA. – NOVEMBER 29: N’Keal Harry #15 of the New England Patriots screams out in celebration after beating the Arizona Cardinals 20-17 at Gillette Stadium on November 29, 2020 in Foxborough, Massachusetts. (Staff Photo By Matt Stone/ MediaNews Group/Boston Herald)
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This spring, the 24-year-old sat behind DeVante Parker, Kendrick Bourne, Jakobi Meyers and Nelson Agholor on the team’s depth chart, with 2021 seventh-round pick Tre Nixon surging past him him this offseason in non-contact practices.
Harry is the first and only Patriots wide receiver Belichick has drafted in the first round. He’s in the final year of his rookie contract, which carried a fifth-year option the team declined this spring.
Harry’s trade has created roughly $1 million in cap space. The NFL Network first reported his trade to Chicago.