Percy Harvin Finished As A Minnesota Viking?
Percy Harvin is a game changing talent on the field. Harvin is currently on IR with an ankle injury, which makes the Vikings run into the playoffs that much more improbable. The injury is a concern, but perhaps a bigger concern is that Harvin is nowhere near the team offering support, he's in Florida rehabbing and keeping loose communications with the head athletic trainer. He wanted a trade in preseason and now he again appears to be distancing himself from the team that drafted him.
According to an article on StarTribune.com the following exchange took place between reporters and Viking's head coach Leslie Frazier:
Q: Is it by design that Percy is not around or would you prefer that he's here?
A: "It's purely up to him. If he wanted to be around, he could be around. But the guys are working hard doing everything they can. I know he wants our team to do well and that's important. But we got some other guys who are on IR as well, so it doesn't concern us."
Q: Have you talked to him?
A: "Not lately."
Q: Is he in Florida?
Q: Is it odd that a player as high profile as Percy not being here?
A: "No. I know he's supportive of his teammates. As any of the guys who are on IR that don't travel with us or don't participate in what we're doing, it's nothing that upsets their teammates or gets them concerned. These guys are so focused on Green Bay and getting ready for that game. That's what's most important."
Q: Is it routine for a guy on IR when he's not going to come back to rehab on his own?
A: "Not on his own. We monitor his rehab."
Q: So [head athletic trainer Eric] Sugarman is in contact with Percy?
Q: What is the status with his ankle? Will he need surgery?
A: "I haven't been told he's going to have to have surgery."
Sounds very much like Frazier is biting his tongue and getting answers out quickly and to the point. My guess is that as much as the team would love to keep Harvin, he may be a head case that simply wants out for reasons only he seems to know.
If that is the case, trade him after the season while his stock is very high in the league. You could get draft picks or a package of a player and picks. Then, use the money you didn't pay Harvin to acquire a veteran wide receiver who can help bail Ponder out, such as Dwayne Bowe who still has gas in the tank and a big catch radius.
I'd rather have Harvin stay with the team for the long haul, but the Vikings have to make sure they just don't let him walk away at the end of his contract.