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N'Keal Harry reveals bold number change ahead of Week 1

/ by Darren Hartwell
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N'Keal Harry isn't leaving the New England Patriots, but he's still getting a "fresh start" of sorts.

The Patriots wide receiver revealed Monday night on social media he's changing his uniform number from No. 15 to No. 1.

Harry joins edge rusher Matthew Judon (No. 9), linebacker Ja'Whaun Bentley (No. 8) and cornerback Jalen Mills (No. 2) among the Patriots players taking advantage of the NFL's new rule allowing most players to choose single-digit jersey numbers.

No. 1 became available last Tuesday when New England surprisingly released quarterback Cam Newton. Harry and Newton had a good relationship -- the QB affectionately called the wide receiver "Doughboy" -- but Harry had no problem scooping up Newton's old number ahead of Week 1.

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Harry wore No. 1 in college for Arizona State, where he made first-team All-Pac-12 twice before New England drafted him 32nd overall in 2019. The 23-year-old struggled in his first two NFL seasons to the point where he requested a trade via his agent before this year's training camp, but perhaps a return to No. 1 will help Harry get his mojo back.

He'll have to wait to show off his new number on the field, though; Harry will miss at least the first three games while on injured reserve with a shoulder injury.

 

Harry switching to No. 1 also allowed fellow wide receiver Nelson Agholor to swap No. 13 for No. 15, the number he wore at USC and last season with the Las Vegas Raiders.

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