It won’t take a rocket scientist, a brain surgeon or Adam Schefter, to tell you that Percy Harvin is something special. He’s a one of a kind player, with a nose for the endzone.
Harvin, whose contract is set to expire after the 2013-2014 season, will be one of the most sought after free agents, if he’s allowed to test the market.
However, if the Minnesota Vikings want to maintain their speedy offense, Harvin is absolutely essential to the team. Taking away Harvin’s play-making ability would cause a serious lack of firepower for Minnesota.
Since entering the league in 2009, out of Florida, Harvin has 256 receptions, 3,032 yards and 18 touchdowns to his name. He already has 38 catches for 407 yards and a score, this season alone.
Oh, and did I mention that he also runs the ball?
On 85 career carries, Harvin has rushed for 587 yards and three touchdowns. Harvin was probably known more for his ability to run than pass, at Florida, but it was never believed that his running ability would translate to the NFL.
While he doesn’t receive consistent snaps at running back, he makes the most of them when given the chance.
Not only does Harvin catch and run the ball, but he also returns kicks and the occasional punt.
In exactly 50 career games, Harvin has 2,954 kick return yards on 107 attempts. He’s taken five of these attempts for a touchdown, with one of those coming this year against the Detroit Lions.
It’s clear to see that Harvin is a jack-of-all-trades.
Earlier this summer, Harvin was reported to be holding out from training camp. Immediate contract demands were speculated by the media, but money was not the root of all evil, in this case, for Harvin.
Rather than a pay raise, he simply wanted more playing time and a clear view of what his role with the Vikings would be. In his first three years, Harvin had been used, and not used, in so many ways.
After a private meeting with head coach Leslie Frazier, Harvin returned to training camp and put any trade or holdout requests, on the back-burner.
It’s a good thing Frazier and Harvin talked it out, as the Vikings’ offense is starting to flourish with Harvin’s playmaking skills.
If you happen to catch any of Minnesota’s games this year, take a note on how many times you see Harvin switch positions on the field. You’ll often see him lined up in the slot, but he makes several appearances on the outside and in the backfield.
Allowing Harvin to move himself around the field creates mismatches for the opposing defense. They’re unable to locate where, approximately, his route will be. This is truly a cornerback’s worst nightmare.
The Vikings are a huge fan of the screen play, where Harvin’s abilities really begin to show off for themselves. With his agility, footwork and ability to juke, defenders aren’t able to get a strong grasp on the 5’11″, 185-pounder.
There have been a few instances where Harvin will receive a screen from five yards behind the line of scrimmage, but turns it into a first down play. This is not only from great down-field blocking, but from Harvin’s knack for making his man miss.
Set to make only $1.5 million in 2013, Harvin is in line for a serious pay boost. While he may not have been vocal about money in the past, he will likely get to that stage, if the Vikings are stingy on making a deal.
As we’ve seen with Adrian Peterson and Chad Greenway, Minnesota is not shy about making a great, yet expensive deal, to keep their core members on staff.
Simply, I cannot see a reason why Percy Harvin should leave Minnesota.
Playing in a dome is the perfect situation for him, as his tremendous speed only gets better when running on a level playing field. There’s probably not a cornerback or safety in the NFL, today, that can match up with Harvin’s speed.
While there have been no recent rumblings on a deal, the rumor mill should begin to spin any time. Several notable receivers, like Larry Fitzgerald, Wes Welker, DeSean Jackson, Antonio Brown and Marques Colston, have all received big contracts to stay with their team.
Minnesota absolutely cannot do what San Diego did, in letting their No. 1 receiver, Vincent Jackson, go. While the Chargers still have a solid passing game, they are clearly missing their 6’5″, 225 pound wide-out.
Due to his great play this year for the Vikings, there isn’t a shred of doubt in my mind that Harvin needs to be re-signed. It won’t take Larry Fitzgerald money to get the deal done, either.
Set to play in Washington on Sunday, Harvin is in line for another huge game, against the league’s worst pass defense. Make sure he’s in your fantasy lineups on Sunday afternoon.
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