Each year as the offseason begins to quiet down after the NFL Draft takes place, fans are given an exciting opportunity to reflect on last season while getting hyped for the season to come.
Around this time, NFL Network unveils its list of the top 100 players from the previous year. The list is made by surveying NFL players on all 32 teams.
Coming in at number 63 out of 100 for the Top 100 Players of 2017 was the Denver Broncos very own Chris Harris Jr.
— Denver Broncos (@Broncos) May 16, 2017
Harris, who went undrafted in 2011 signed on with the Denver Broncos as an undrafted free agent. His contribution to the team’s success makes him one of the best undrafted free agents in Broncos history.
Known for his stout coverage in the slot, Harris’ contribution to the Broncos’ defense and the “No Fly Zone” makes him unquestionably one of the team’s most important players. Coming off of back-to-back Pro Bowl seasons in 2014 and 2015, Harris was one of the key players in the Broncos 2015 Super Bowl run.
Harris continued his successful NFL career in 2016, earning his third straight Pro Bowl nomination.
Not only was his play stellar enough to earn a trip to the Pro Bowl, but Harris also earned his first First-Team All-Pro nomination.
Harris’ numbers may not sparkle (2 interceptions in 2016) but his lockdown coverage usually prevents quarterbacks from even throwing in his direction. Not only known for defending against the pass, Harris added also 57 tackles to the Broncos’ defense, which was the fourth most on the team.
Not only was he selected to the AP First-Team All-Pro, but Harris was also nominated as Pro Football Focus’ First-Team All-Pro. After his stellar play in 2016, Harris finished the year ranked as PFF’s number one overall cornerback in the NFL. According to PFF, Harris lead the NFL with 28 defensive stops.
Given his success on the Broncos defense, an argument can be made that Harris’ place on the list is lower than it should be. Harris’ place on the list in the previous year was 52.
With as many accolades and accomplishments as Harris earned the previous year, it’s questionable that the number one overall cornerback in the league according to PFF wouldn’t even be in the top 50 players.
Considering there are only 12 defensive First-Team All-Pro nominations, Harris’ rank by default, should be no lower than 28th.
Regardless of his ranking on the NFL Network list, Harris’ play continues to be a crucial part of the Denver Broncos’ success in the NFL, specifically on the defensive side of the ball.