Kiper: Risky to count on Duron Harmon

April, 21, 2014
Apr 21
12:35
PM ET
ESPN draft analyst Mel Kiper has posted an Insider piece today in which he lists top needs for each NFL team .

One of them for the Patriots is safety and Kiper writes, "We'll see if Duron Harmon can take a step forward this season, but I consider that a tenuous assumption."

Harmon was a surprise third-round draft choice in 2013, and played 36.9 percent of the defensive snaps last season as the No. 3 option behind Devin McCourty and Steve Gregory.

With the Patriots releasing Gregory in late February, it thrusts Harmon (6-foot-1, 205 pounds) into a potential top role.

Tavon Wilson, Patrick Chung, Nate Ebner and Kanorris Davis round out the depth chart, with the chance that cornerback Logan Ryan (third round, 2013) gets a look there as well.

As for the draft, Washington State safety Deone Bucannon is among the prospects who have taken an in-house visit to Gillette Stadium. If he's available in a post-Round 1 scenario, he could be an intriguing option for the Patriots to consider.

Mike Reiss

ESPN New England Patriots reporter

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