Feb 2, 2014; East Rutherford, NJ, USA; Seattle Seahawks wide receiver Percy Harvin (11) returns a kick for a touchdown against the Denver Broncos in the third quarter in Super Bowl XLVIII at MetLife Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

Percy Harvin should be among league’s best receivers next season

Percy Harvin doesn’t really get the credit he deserves.

When most football fans think of the NFL’s top receivers, what names come to mind?

Calvin Johnson, Andre Johnson, Pierre Garcon, A.J. Green, and Brandon Marshall certainly do. Perhaps you could throw in DeSean Jackson, Antonio Brown and Demaryius Thomas.

For most fans outside of Seattle, Harvin’s name isn’t mentioned right away — even though he really should be in the conversation.

The only thing that seems to be keeping Harvin from being named among of the league’s best receivers is his health.

He has only played in all 16 regular season games one time in his career, in 2011. In the past two seasons, he has played in a total of 10 regular season games.

Last year, he played in one regular season game, parts of the NFC Divisional playoff and then the Super Bowl. We all saw his explosiveness in the Seahawks’ rout of the Broncos on Feb. 2, but could you imagine if Harvin played like that every Sunday?

He could put up video game numbers like he did when he played alongside Tim Tebow at the University of Florida. Then again, at Florida, Harvin was more of an elite running back than a receiver.

In his three years in the Sunshine State, Harvin actually had more rushing attempts (194) than receptions (133), and more rushing touchdowns (19) than touchdown catches (13).

That carried over into the NFL when he was drafted by the Minnesota Vikings, who used him as more of a utility, all-around player, than a flat out receiver.

In his five-year NFL career, Harvin has never had more than 1,000 receiving yards and never had more than six touchdown catches in a season.

On the flip side, he has averaged 6.4 rushing yards per attempt in his NFL career and returned 115 kickoffs for 3,241 yards and five touchdowns.

But Harvin should have his best years as a receiver in Seattle.

When the Seahawks traded for his services last year, it appeared they wanted to re-focus his skill-set and use him as their main receiver as well as their return man on kickoffs. Harvin would have been the Seahawks main man in 2013 had he not been hurt for the majority of the year.

But now, with the departure of Golden Tate this offseason, Harvin has the chance to be Russell Wilson‘s No. 1 receiving target all year.

That should mean major statistics in 2014 for both Harvin and Wilson.

Even in Seattle’s run-first offense, Wilson has managed more than 6,400 passing yards and 52 touchdowns in his two years at the helm of the offense. Those numbers will increase significantly with Harvin catching a majority of the passes.

Harvin his a playmaker, flat out. Explosive, with great speed, good hands and the agility to weave in-and-out of defenses, as we saw in the Super Bowl.

Next year, with his health back to full and a full offseason to workout with the offense, Harvin should finally be in the conversation of the league’s best receivers.

And that’s exactly where Harvin belongs.

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  • trinity

    I don’t think so. Sooner or later, durability has to be factored into ability, and the guy is as fragile as an egg. If he can stay on the field, then yes. But history says he won’t, so it’s up in the air.

  • TrippinTheCripple

    I don’t know. Health and availability are obviously key concerns. If, however, Harvin can stay on the field, he has the ability to not only be among the best receivers, but among the best all-around offensive weapons of our time..

  • HD

    let’s put this in perspective…here are Harvin’s career games:
    Seattle Seahawks

    Minnesota Vikings

    Minnesota Vikings

    Minnesota Vikings

    He averaged 10 games a year (having played one regular season game because of the surgery in 2013 brought that average way down)…the surgery that he had last year should have been done when he came out of college…that was a chronic problem with the way his muscle developed in the labrum…Minn used him in a high number of plays offensively and special teams…Seattle will do less….

    FYI ….Crabtree averaged 12.6 games over since 09
    I think Harvin will be good for 12 games this year…I think Seattle will use him wisely…and his chronic hip issue not addressed in college…will be history now that it was finally fixed….look for Seattle to add another another receiver in the draft…use Lockett more…have Kearse as a starter…and Baldwin…Seattle will add a returner…they may have already done that actually….and use Harvin in the return game in a more limited fashion….Mathews and Clark might add in another backup role….

  • Hugh Jass

    Watch for lots of helmet hits/late hits from teams who will try to take him out of the equation early.

  • Josh Thompson

    Should be…… but probably won’t. As a MN fan I’ll tell you, you’ve already had a taste of his durability concerns. Wait till you guys in Seattle get a taste of all the offensive pass interference calls he gets. I can’t find the stats but I’ve seen the wind come out of many a sail, when Harvin gets a 15yd flag for pushing off. He’s got great speed and ability to make people miss, but getting separation between him and a DB is something he’s just not very good at, especially when it comes to going deep.