NEW ORLEANS (WVUE) -
Sean Payton said as far back as training camp that Deonte Harris was one of the fastest learners on the team. And sure enough, his development as not just a return specialist, but also as a versatile wide receiver, is proving valuable for the Saints.
“He’s a great weapon,” says quarterback Drew Brees. “He can do a lot of things. He’s got a really great feel for the game and a lot of our route concepts. We were trying to put him in good positions with good match-ups in space, get the ball in his hands, and let him do what he does best.”
And the seven catches Harris made against the Bears, his career-high for a single game, were pivotal plays. Five of them went for first downs. Four of them came on third downs went the Saints had to convert.
“You’ve got a big game, you need a big performance,” says Harris. “That’s always been my motto since I was young. They say big-time players make big-time plays. I’m just trying to make plays for the team.”
Of course, a performance like this doesn’t just happen overnight. As one of the smaller players in pro football, not to mention entering the league undrafted from a Division II school, Harris says he’s always had to go the extra mile just to get recognized.
“Me being my size, I’m at a disadvantage already,” says Harris. “So I felt like I had to work twice as hard. That’s just what my people instilled in me at a young age, and I’ve carried that with me for life. I just try to be a positive role model for guys that took that same route that I took.”
And in the process, Harris has also become a model of hard work for his teammates.
“He just wants to go,” says running Alvin Kamara. “He’s like, ‘I’m about to make a play whenever I touch the ball. It is what it is. I don’t care of I’m big or small or whoever’s on the other side. It is what it is. I’m going to make a play if the ball’s in my hands.’ He’s just got a lot of will and a lot of heart, and it’s backed by hard work.”
Copyright 2021 WVUE. All rights reserved.