Another day, another news story about Maurice Harris. On Sunday, the New England Patriots released the wide receiver from their 90-man roster with an injury designation. Upon passing through the waiver wire unclaimed, he then reverted to the team’s injured reserve list on Monday. Today, he is off the list again: as first reported by ESPN’s Field Yates, the Patriots have released Harris off IR with an injury settlement.
What does this mean? Harris will now receive pre-negotiated payments by New England for a period that depends on the severity of his injury and whether or not he joins another team in the meantime. However, he cannot be re-signed by the Patriots during that time. Once the settlement period is over, he becomes a ‘normal’ free agent that is eligible to sign anywhere he wants — with one exception: he would have to wait an additional six weeks to come to New England again.
Harris originally joined the Patriots in free agency, and started his tenure with the club well: the 26-year-old looked like a roster lock during spring practices and also continued to stand out early in training camp. After catching 3 passes for 27 yards and a touchdown during the Patriots’ first preseason game, however, things went downhill: an injury during joint practices with the Tennessee Titans forced Harris to miss the next two exhibition games — and the Patriots to let him go.