Damien Harris reacts to getting first real NFL action following not playing vs. Lions

Ryan Hannable
August 17, 2019 - 11:25 pm

Saturday was a big night for Patriots rookie running back Damien Harris.

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After not really being an active participant in 11-on-11 work in practices this far, and not playing in the first preseason game, Harris got his first taste of live action in the second preseason game against the Titans.

Harris actually played all four quarters, which is something the team sometimes does for young backs to get a feel for how the rhythm of the NFL goes.

“I just looked at it as my first opportunity to play with this team, so that was what I was excited about," Harris told reporters afterwards. "Last week was in the past, so it wasn’t anything I was necessarily focusing on this week. Like I said, just being able to go out there this week and play with these guys. It was my first opportunity to play with this team. It was really exciting.”

Harris finished with 14 carries for 80 yards, while also adding four catches for 23 yards. He showed great vision every time he touched the ball and proved he can potentially take away some of Sony Michel's carries, while also playing a role in the passing game.

Harris is part of a crowded Patriots backfield that also includes Michel, James White, Rex Burkhead and Brandon Bolden.

“I have learned a lot," he said. "Not just from those guys, but from everybody — the coaches, the players, vets. I am trying just to learn as much as I can. Every day when I walk into the building I try to be a sponge and get as much information as possible to help me be the best possible player I can be for this team.”

All his learning appeared to pay off, as Harris was one of the best offensive players on the field in the 22-17 win.

“It was a lot of fun," he said. "Obviously, we were able to get a win and play together as a team. It was a lot of fun."

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