USC DB Ajene Harris signs with Philadelphia Eagles as undrafted free agent after 2019 NFL Draft

Alicia de Artola
Apr 27, 2019, 2:26 PM PDT
Alicia de Artola/Reign of Troy
Alicia de Artola/Reign of Troy

Versatile USC defensive back Ajene Harris signed with the Philadelphia Eagles as an undrafted free agent after the 2019 NFL Draft.

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Ajene Harris will get the opportunity to prove himself in the NFL with the Philadelphia Eagles after signing with the team as an undrafted free agent.

It’ll be a battle to make the Eagles roster, but Harris, who tweeted, “here I come Philly,” will have a former Trojan teammate on hand with Nelson Agholor already holding down the fort in Philadelphia.

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Harris’ Trojan career took plenty of twists and turns. He played quarterback in high school but was recruited to USC as a three-star wide receiver, ranking No. 1,497 in the 247Sports composite for the class of 2014.

The lowly rank didn’t matter for the 5-foot-10 playmaker, who worked his way into the wide receiver rotation from Day 1. He played in five games as a freshman, starting once, before a hamstring injury sidelined or limited him for the rest of the year.

In 2015, Harris never got the chance to build on his bright early showing, undergoing hip surgery during the offseason and sitting out the entire season.

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When he returned to action in 2016, the arrival of a loaded wide receiver recruiting class prompted him to seek playing time by converting to cornerback. Though it took him some time to settle into playing defensive back, he eventually took over the starting nickelback role for the final four games of the season. He finished with 30 tackles, 3.5 tackles for loss, four deflections, two forced fumbles and two interceptions, one of which he returned for a touchdown.

Fully established as USC’s starting nickelback in 2017, he had 59 tackles, six deflections and three interceptions, including another pick six.

The 2019 season came with another unexpected wrinkle for Harris. For the first seven games of the campaign, he served at nickelback as expected. However, when injuries ravaged the safety position, he moved back to place the final five games of his career there. He was recognized as an All Pac-12 honorable mention and USC’s Most Inspirational Player while posting 57 tackles, 3 tackles for loss, seven deflections, an interception returned for a touchdown and a forced fumble.