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Chris Harris Jr. will be back as Broncos’ exercise $1.1 million option

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At least one-half the NFL’s best cornerback duo won’t be going anywhere.

Carolina Panthers v Denver Broncos Photo by Justin Edmonds/Getty Images

While the Broncos are reportedly trying to find a home for one of their slot corners, they are definitely keeping the other one.

Chris Harris Jr., an undrafted cornerback who came to the Broncos in 2011, will not be leaving the Mile High City anytime soon.

The Broncos have exercised the $1.1 million option on Harris’ contract for the 2018 season, 9NEWS reported.

The Broncos had until five days before the start of the 2018 league season – which is tomorrow – to exercise No. 25’s option.

Thankfully they recognized that keeping one of the best slot corners in the league was a good move.

As Mile High Report’s Christopher Hart noted in his 2017 player review, losing Harris Jr. would have meant losing not just the heart and soul of the No Fly Zone but of this entire team:

“From undrafted to one of the league’s premier NFL corners, the gridiron journey of Chris Harris Jr. has been phenomenal to watch. In his first season with the squad, he earned PFWA All-Rookie Team honors, as well as the league’s Breakout Player of the League accolades. After a successful first year, Harris Jr. never looked back and has become a three-time All-Pro, Pro Bowler and Super Bowl Champion.”

Earning a yearly average of less than $500,000 his first three seasons, Harris Jr. signed a $42.5 million contract in 2014. He is slated to earn shy of $16 million over the final two seasons - the 18th highest paid cornerback in the league but undoubtedly one of the top three in performance.

At the time of his contract extension, Broncos’ GM John Elway noted the importance of keeping one of the Broncos’ own.

“Chris is a young, ascending player who has consistently performed at a high level during his first four years in the NFL,” Elway said in a statement. “He joined the Broncos as a college free agent and has worked tirelessly to become one of the league’s best at his position.

”It’s a priority for us to develop and reward our own players as we continue assembling the best possible team. Whether it’s on the field or in the community, we are proud to have Chris representing the Broncos for many years to come.”

Speaking on CBS Monday, Harris Jr. talked about being an undrafted free agent and noted that he came in to Denver with the mindset that he was going to be the best rookie on the team.

“That’s kind of hard when I had to compete with Von Miller,” he laughed, “but that was my main goal coming in to my rookie season.”

Poll

How does this move make you feel about the 2018 defense?

This poll is closed

  • 66%
    Relieved to keep No. 25!
    (385 votes)
  • 17%
    Still holding out hope we can keep Talib too.
    (101 votes)
  • 11%
    As long as we don’t go on a fire sale of defenders like the Seahawks!
    (67 votes)
  • 4%
    "Whorfin"
    (24 votes)
577 votes total Vote Now