N'Keal Harry has respectable 10/1 odds to win NFL Rookie of the Year in 2019. But it doesn't sound like Reggie Wayne will be taking that action.
Wayne, who had a cup of coffee with the Patriots during the 2015 preseason, said on NFL Network this week he doesn't expect Harry to be an immediate contributor in New England's offense despite early positive signs from the team's No. 32 overall pick.
“I think you have to pump (the) brakes a little bit on N’Keal Harry and understand it’s going to be a process," Wayne said, via Patriots.com, "and give him a year or so before he can actually go out there and play fast."
Wayne had 14 seasons with the Indianapolis Colts under his belt before signing with the Patriots in August 2015. But he struggled to pick up the offense before his release in early September and warned that Harry may face a similar learning curve under quarterback Tom Brady.
"I’ve always said that it’s going to take a year, maybe a year and a half before you can adjust to the speed and what’s going on for an NFL football team, especially for a quarterback like Tom Brady," Wayne added.
There's some evidence to back up Wayne's caution: Terry Glenn is the only wide receiver in Patriots history to tally 1,000-plus receiving yards as a rookie, and since that 1996 campaign, no Pats rookie has topped 600 receiving yards.
Then again, Harry has the potential to snap that streak. Julian Edelman admitted last month he's been impressed with how quickly Harry is picking things up, and the 6-foot-3 Arizona State product even scored an invite to Brady's exclusive throwing sessions.
Now, Harry has bulletin board material from Wayne as he eyes a prominent role in the Patriots' offense.
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