While Mac Jones will be the center of conversation leading up to Sunday’s kickoff against the Miami Dolphins (and all season, really), we’re equally intrigued to see who emerges as the rookie quarterback’s go-to receiver.
In all honesty, it feels like a crap shoot given how many options the Patriots have after they overhauled their WR corps in the offseason.
Jakobi Meyers is probably the safest bet given he led the team in receiving last year, but Nelson Agholor and Kendrick Bourne didn’t sign multiyear deals to be decoys.
Speaking of which, what do Agholor’s and Bourne’s arrivals mean for N’Keal Harry? The third-year receiver requested a trade before training camp, but it looks like he’s stuck with the Patriots at least until the middle of the season.
Despite the fact that he’s buried on the depth chart, Harry was able to ditch his former No. 15 and switch to arguably the coolest number in the game: No. 1.
How did this happen?
How did Patriots receiver N’Keal Harry get to change his jersey number to No. 1?
Harry really didn’t feel like waiting for the dust to settle following Cam Newton’s shocking release before he pounced on the No. 1 jersey, huh?
In all seriousness, it’s Harry’s right to switch his jersey and we really can’t blame him for picking a genuinely awesome number. It just might take some time to adjust to the idea that one of the Patriots’ most inconsistent offensive players is now going to rep a number that is typically worn by a proven superstar.
For anyone wondering how Harry got his hands on the No. 1 jersey, the NFL passed a rule this offseason expanding eligible jersey numbers for certain positions. The rule change allows running backs, wide receivers, tight ends and fullbacks to wear numbers in the 1-49 range, as well as the 80-89 range.
In Harry’s defense, it’s easy to see why he picked the No. 1. After all, it’s what he wore at Arizona State, where he established himself as one of the top wideout prospects in the country in 2017 and 2018. In those two seasons, he racked up 155 catches for 2,230 yards and 17 touchdowns for the Sun Devils.
Could this signal a change of luck for Harry? It’s possible, as the 23-year-old has been a major disappointment since the Patriots spent a first-round draft pick on him back in 2019. Let’s hope so, because it would be a real shame if one of the coolest jersey numbers available was being worn by a player who isn’t trusted enough to be a regular contributor.