If you are a regular listener of our live podcasts, you may remember a conversation we had in the pre-season regarding Percy Harvin. The conversation revolved around rumors that Harvin and the Vikings didn't see eye-to-eye on various things – mostly money – and that the Vikings may try to move the dynamic receiver. My co-hosts, Laura Calaway and Rohan Bhasin, were steadfast in their position that the Colts should pass up any opportunity to acquire the enigmatic Harvin.
I had a slightly different opinion. Given his uniqe play making ability, I said the Colts should go for it, assuming the cost would be something less than a 1st round pick. Harvin would have far more talent than anyone in rounds 2-7, but he's not without risks. The argument ended as most do: with me being right. I tried to force a meme out of the situation: 2nd round pick and $14MM – the fake, exaggerated price I was willing to pay for Harvin – would be the benchmark for all of our player-acquisition discussions (Dwayne Bowe, Greg Jennings, Mike Wallace: worth a 2nd round pick and $14 MILLION dollars? Who they think they are, Chelsea Clinton?)
So here we are, 6 months later, and Percy Harvin's name is once again making the rounds through the rumor mill.
Before we talk about why he might be available, let's talk about what he is. While Adrian Peterson won the award for being the 2012 NFL MVP, the dirty little secret that no one who voted on the award wants to discuss is that Peterson wasn't even the MVP of his own team through the first half of the season. That title belonged to Harvin, who was putting up impressive stats despite 1) playing with QB Christian Ponder 2) having no other credible receiving threat on the team to draw coverages away from him 3) having Adrian Peterson get off to a relatively slow start.
Harvin had 62 catches for 677 yards and 3 TDs in 9 games, or a 16-game pace of: 110 catches for 1203 yards, and 5 TDs, as well as 171 yards and 2 TDs in the ground game. On top of that, he's only 24 years old with room to improve and he's a great return man.
In other words, Percy Harvin is the kind of dynamic receiving threat every team would love to have.
So why are the Vikings, a team that is desperate for offensive threats, considering dealing him? While money is always an issue, it may not be the biggest issue in this case. Reports from Minnesota indicate that team officials AND players are unhappy with Harvin after he launched into a disrespectful tirade directed at coach Leslie Frasier. And this isn't the first time such an accusation has been thrown Harvin's way: he was accused of not only berating former Vikings' head coach Brad Childress, but throwing weights at him as well.
Sounds like a lovely fellow.
The talent that Harvin possesses is intoxicating. He's fast, he's quick, and he can turn on a dime. He can split wide, play in the slot, and be effective out of the back field. Some team – the Patriots – will take a chance on him. If the Colts were to acquire him, he'd be their most talented wide receiver by a fair margin. But what impact would his attitude have on a Colts locker room full of young players? Those concerns, combined with the fact that he's going to hold out absent a new contract, have caused me to re-think my Harvin position. I would still try to acquire him if I were the Colts, but the price I'm willing to pay has gone down. The Vikings seem to feel compelled to move him. Perhaps they feel it's addition by subtraction. Whatever the case, I'm not paying them market value to cure their headaches.
4th-round pick and $14-million dollars?! Why not, it's not my money.
What are your thoughts on Harvin? Want him? Or not with a 10-foot pole?