ENGLEWOOD, Colo. — From 2014 to 2016, Chris Harris Jr. made the Pro Bowl each season.
Following the 2016 season, he was named a First-Team All-Pro.
And yet, Harris said Friday he thinks his 2018 performance may have been the best of his career.
“I think my level this year surpassed all those years,” said Harris after being presented with the Darrent Williams Good Guy Award. “I think this is one of my best seasons I’ve had here. For my 11 games, shoot, I had stats that some people barely have in a full season. I feel like this is one of my best seasons.”
In Harris’ 11 full games of action — he started a Week 13 game against the Bengals before suffering an injury in the first quarter — he posted the stats to back up that claim.
Harris tied his career high for interceptions in a season with three, and he returned one of those picks for a touchdown against Arizona in Week 7.
He is the only player in the NFL to record multiple interceptions in each of the last seven seasons.
The Broncos have certainly felt his absence since he broke his leg against the Bengals. Without Harris, Denver has dropped its last two games. The Broncos were officially eliminated from playoff contention Sunday after several other AFC teams won games.
Harris said he’s struggled to watch his team fall short while he’s been sidelined.
“It’s been very hard,” Harris said. “You take football from me, I’m pretty much depressed. It’s hard not to be able to be on the field. I just try to take that and that motivation into my treatment and my rehab. I killed that, so now it’s just resting up to get my mind right for next year, what I got to do to get us back.”
But if he’d stayed healthy, Harris thinks the Broncos’ three-game winning streak would have continued.
“I feel like we were definitely going to get to the playoffs if I didn’t get hurt,” he said.
Harris, though, still could have one game ahead of him this season. He was named a Pro Bowl alternate on Tuesday, and he said he’ll be healthy enough to play if he is selected.
In fact, Harris said he feels “100 percent” and could play this weekend.
“Oh yeah, easy,” said Harris when asked if he would be ready for the Pro Bowl in late January. “I could play now. That’s how I feel.”
That won’t happen, as Harris was placed on injured reserve earlier this week. But the Pro Bowl could give Harris yet another opportunity to showcase his talent in front of a national audience.
“I came in undrafted,” Harris said. “Nobody out there knows who I am, they don’t understand what I do on the field. They don’t understand that I probably have the hardest job in the league at corner, playing slot-man everywhere and guarding a guy all over the field.”
He may be doing it at his highest level yet.