BOSTON (CBS) — Amid a flurry of action on Thursday, the Patriots are reportedly locking up safety Duron Harmon.
NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport reported that the Patriots are “expected” to work out an agreement to keep Harmon in Foxboro.
UPDATE: Mike Garafolo of the NFL Network reported shortly after free agency opened that it’s a four-year, $20 million deal for Harmon.
The 26-year-old has formed a formidable back end of the Patriots’ defense with Devin McCourty, both former Rutgers standouts. Harmon has played in 63 games and gotten 12 starts in his four-year career, and he may be in line to succeed McCourty or Patrick Chung as a weekly starter for New England.
Harmon has intercepted seven passes in his regular-season career and has picked off two more passes in 10 playoff games. That includes the game-sealing interception in the end zone against Baltimore in the 2014 divisional round.
Harmon was set to become an unrestricted free agent when the new league year begins at 4 p.m. on Thursday, but a contract signed before that time would prevent the Patriots from probably losing a potentially important piece of the future for the defense.
Earlier on Thursday, the Patriots reportedly agreed to terms with cornerback Stephon Gilmore. The Patriots also reportedly were or are considering trading cornerback Malcolm Butler for Saints receiver Brandin Cooks.