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Patriots linebacker David Harris announces his retirement

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The veteran calls it quits after 11 NFL seasons.

NFL: New England Patriots at Buffalo Bills Timothy T. Ludwig-USA TODAY Sports

When the New England Patriots signed David Harris in June 2017, he was expected to add both depth and experience to the team’s linebacker corps. The veteran did indeed add both of those things and was praised for his leadership, but one thing that he did not add was the playmaking ability the unit was sorely lacking all season long.

Ultimately, Harris was active for only 10 games in his first year with the Patriots and finished the season with a mere 22 tackles and 1.5 sacks. What became clear was that he was close to the end of the road – a thought that became official earlier today, when the 34-year old officially announced his retirement (via Sportstars):

After 11 years of having played the greatest team sport at its highest level, it’s now time for me to announce my retirement from the NFL.

Harris, who originally entered the NFL as a second round draft pick by the New York Jets in 2007, spent the first 10 seasons of his professional career with New England’s divisional rivals. After his unceremonious release in 2017, the 2009 second-team All Pro joined the Patriots. However, as mentioned above, Harris had little on-field impact over the course of the season and was relegated to a backup role.

Consequently, Harris was seen as a potential cap casualty earlier this offseason as his release would create roughly $1.65 million in salary cap space. With the defender announcing his retirement, this sum gets now added to New England's cap, which in turn grows to $16.3 million according to patscap.com's Miguel Benzan.