It’s one thing to be versatile.
But when a new coaching staff which hasn’t worked with you walks in the door and asks you to change positions, it’s probably not a good sign for your future.
The 30-year-old Avant has caught 259 passes in seven seasons, more than 50 in each of the last three seasons. So it’s not as if he lacks the ability to play the position at the NFL level.
“It’s one of those things that I work hard, I’m going to continue to work hard and whatever that may be, whatever the team wants to do with me, I’m going to do it as best as I can for the team, whatever that may be,” Avant said. “I don’t necessarily think it’ll cloud my future. I really think it’s an honor anyway for a coach to think you can do other things.”
Likewise, Harbor downplayed the notion he’s not a tight end any longer, or that he’s in jeopardy.
“I’m a tight end, and for emergency situations and versatility purposes, for me, I’m learning something new,” Harbor said. “If something happens in a game, you have 52 guys on the roster, 45 guys that can dress. If something happens where you do need an outside linebacker, it’s good to know something. I’m still a tight end. I’m not switching positions.”
Still, Harbor and Avant should also consider the possibility that their new boss thinks they’re topped out at their current positions or surplus to requirements, and that they might be plying their trade elsewhere.