We’re only a few months away from NFL training camp opening up. Can you believe that? I certainly can’t! The New England Patriots are certainly in an interesting position. They didn’t really upgrade a lot of their positions with splashing names of free agents or trades. They lost star cornerback J.C. Jackson to the L.A. Chargers in free agency. But now the focus shifts to what this year’s team will look like, after getting back to the playoffs in 2021. One name that nobody is talking about is running back Damien Harris. He has become a solid NFL running back in his three seasons with the Patriots. But with the 2022 season approaching, things seem a bit different for Damien Harris. Like he has to have a huge season. Why you may ask? Let’s look at why 2022 will be a big season for Patriots running back Damien Harris.
Patriots RB Damien Harris is on a contract year
Damien Harris is coming into the final year of his rookie contract. He is set to make just under one million dollars in the 2022 season. That means this could be the final season we see Damien Harris in a Patriots uniform. If Harris has a big 2022 season, he will have his fair share of sitters during the offseason. The Patriots made sure to load up at running back with the like of Rhamondre Stevenson and several draft picks in the 2022 NFL Draft. So Harris knows if the Patriots won’t pay him, some other NFL team will if he has a huge season.
The Patriots rely heavily on the run
We saw it last year, right? The Patriots had a top five rushing attack in the NFL. With Mac Jones being a rookie, they knew they had to rely on their running game to help out in the offensive attack. Mac will be able to do more this year. But the Patriots still need that running attack to be lethal. Remember the Buffalo game last year when they won 14-10 and threw the football three times? Yeah, case and point right there! The Patriots need Harris to be extremely productive, if they want to win football games in 2022.
I like Damien Harris a lot on this Patriots team. Hopefully, he will be a Patriot for the foreseeable future. 2022 will be telling of what happens with the fourth year back out of Alabama. Can the Patriots retain him in their long-term plans? Will he chase the money elsewhere if he has a huge year in 2022? Time will tell.
–Al Nahigian (@BigAl2793 on Twitter)
Featured Image Credit: nbcsports.com
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