ENGLEWOOD, Colo. – Chris Harris Jr. has been looking forward to this week for what seems like forever.
"Oh yeah, I didn't get recruited in high school. I didn't have a lot of teams coming at me out of college. I didn't get drafted. Now, to have multiple teams hit me up, it definitely feels good," Harris said on the eve of the NFL's two-day legal tampering period that begins Monday.
During this 48-hour period, teams can speak with free agents, discuss terms and agree verbally to a contract, which would become official with the start of the league's new year on Wednesday afternoon.
Harris, who has topped $50 million in earnings since going undrafted out of the University of Kansas in 2011 -- when he signed with Denver for a $2,000 bonus -- is about to hit the open market for the first time in his nearly decade-long NFL career.
"I've waited long enough," said Harris, who had begun to wonder if the league's calendar would be altered by the coronavirus crisis gripping the globe. “I wanted it to stay on schedule, but I could understand if they pushed it back with everything going on with the virus because the physicals are a very important part of the contract.”
Harris rejected a three-year, $36 million offer to stay in Denver last fall but said at the end of the 2019 season that he was open to returning to the Broncos. However, that thinking changed when the Broncos acquired cornerback A.J. Bouye from Jacksonville earlier this month.
"That door's probably closed," said Harris, the last member of the "No-Fly Zone" secondary that was the backbone of the Broncos' Super Bowl 50 championship run. "They've already spent a lot. They've allocated all their money in the secondary to most of the guys on the team already."
The Broncos recently placed a franchise tag worth $11.5 million on safety Justin Simmons and last year signed free agent defensive backs Kareem Jackson and Bryce Callahan.