According to a report from Mike Garafolo of NFL Network, N'Keal Harry's agent Jamal Tooson has formally requested a trade for his client, the Patriots first-round pick in 2019. Harry has 45 catches and four touchdowns in his first two seasons since being selected 32nd overall.
"Following numerous conversations with the Patriots, I believe it's time for a fresh start and best for both parties if N'Keal moves on before training camp," said Tooson in his statement.
Harry saw the start to his career delayed as he opened his rookie season on PUP and did not play for the first nine weeks of the season. He scored his first touchdown in his second game and should've had another against the Chiefs in his fourth, but was incorrectly ruled out of bounds on a game-changing officiating mistake.
The receiver had a better start to his second season, registering a career-high eight catches for 72 yards in Week 2 against the Seattle Seahawks but would finish the year with just 14 catches in the last eight games of the season as the Patriots missed the playoffs for the first time since 2008.
Whether or not Tooson's request is to be honored or not remains to be seen, the Patriots would certainly like to avoid selling low on a former first-round pick, especially with continued uncertainty at the position. Rosters at this point in the calendar are mostly set, at least until teams get a look at their personnel in early training camp practices or injuries strike.
Though the team signed two veteran free agents in Kendrick Bourne and Nelson Agholor and have appeared to have found another undrafted gem in Jakobi Meyers, none possess the kind of size and pedigree that Harry does. There has still been some hope that in his second year with quarterback Cam Newton, Harry could put it all together.
Now the team will have to weigh the situation and consider what kind of compensation could possibly make sense if any teams are interested in acquiring the receiver. It appears that any optimism of Harry figuring it out in his third year in New England is fading fast.