Alumni Focus: Al Harris

This years draft is arguably the deepest CB draft in NFL history.  The Eagles have been linked to a number of players including all the top CB’s.  I thought it was fitting to tie in one of my favorite players while he was here, Al Harris.  Al The Foul was the perfect slot corner for this team.  He wasn’t afraid to mix it up, get up tight and jam receivers.  It was his style.  WR’s hated the bump and run Harris used to play.  They weren’t used to his physical play.  Al Harris broke into the league with the Buccaneers.  After being taken in the 6th round of the 1997 NFL draft he the spent the entire season on their practice squad.  The Eagles claimed Harris off waivers right before the 1998 season.  He started a week later for an injured Bobby Taylor.  Al Harris would start 7 games for the Eagles that year and played in all 16 games.

In 5 years with the Eagles Harris picked off 7 passes and started 21 games.  He was the perfect compliment to Troy Vincent and Bobby Taylor.  During this 5 year stretch and with Brian Dawkins at safety the Eagles had the best defensive backfield in the league and it wasn’t close.  Al Harris left the Eagles in a trade after the 2002 season.  The Packers acquired Harris and a 4th round draft pick for a 2nd pick.  His best play and one of the most exciting plays in NFL history was his pick 6 overtime win against the Seattle Seahawks in the 2003 NFC wild card game.  Seahawks QB Matt Hasselbeck said they wanted the ball because “they were going to score.”  Harris picked off the ball and bolted towards the end zone.  Ball Game.  Harris finished his career with 362 tackles, 4 sacks and 21 interceptions.  He was about as durable as you can be.  During his career with the Packers if he dressed, he started including 5 straight years of never missing a start.  He finished his career following seasons with the Dolphins and Rams.  Al Harris was a 14 year NFL veteran and a damn good one in my opinion.  It’s a shame his career couldn’t have lasted longer than 5 years with the Eagles.  He was too good and they simply couldn’t afford him.

Al Harris has joined forces again with Andy Reid as he’s the defensive backs coach for the Kansas City Chiefs.

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