De'Vante Harris opens season as Saints' third cornerback

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De'Vante Harris, a second-year cornerback, played 44 snaps for the Saints defense on Monday night, the second straight

De'Vante Harris, a second-year cornerback, played 44 snaps for the Saints defense on Monday night, the second straight season he's debuted as the team's primary nickel back. 

When Harris, nicknamed "Aggie" because he played his college ball at Texas A&M enters the game, P.J. Williams slides to the inside and Harris plays the left outside spot. 

Harris's presence limited veteran Sterling Moore, who led all Saints cornerbacks with 806 snaps a year ago, to a special teams role. Moore did not take a snap on defense against the Vikings. 

"We just thought Aggie Harris  had been working with the ones and that was our decision going in," Payton said. “Just the consistency through camp. He’s played really well."

For Harris, it's the second straight season he's started off the season as a key player on defense. Harris played 60 defensive snaps in the opener as a rookie, 30 in the second game and then just 18 the rest of the way. 

The secondary struggled against Vikings receivers Stefon Diggs and Adam Thielen, who combined to catch 16 passes for 250 yards on Monday night. 

"I've got to do better, we've got to do better," Harris said. "Our defensive backs coach, Aaron Glenn, said we didn't really have a sharp week of practice, and it showed."

New Orleans' young secondary must now shake off its rough opening performance in a hurry with New England looming. 

"You're going to get frustrated. You've got to cut it off and go to the next play," Harris said. "You're in the league, man, it's the NFL, guys are paid to make plays and I'm paid to stop them, we're paid to stop them. Guys are going to make plays, and you've just got to keep looking forward, keep trucking."

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