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Focus on: Percy Harvin
Now that Percy Harvin is on the 53-man roster and has returned to the practice field, the next question is: When will the playmaking receiver/returner/runner make his game-day debut for the Seahawks?
“Percy is ready to go today. He’s ready to come out and work,” coach Pete Carroll said on Wednesday, before Harvin was limited to individual drills as the team began practicing for Sunday’s game against the Minnesota Vikings at CenturyLink Field.
“That doesn’t mean that he’s going to play in this game. We don’t know that yet. He’s got to make it through the practices. He feels he’s 100 percent. He feels like he’s ready to go and go for it.”
“He’s on it,” Carroll said of the way Harvin has progressed through, and emerge from, his rehab. “That’s pretty exciting times, so we’re all encouraged. Check in with us tomorrow, we’ll see what happens.”
But the opponent and site of this week’s game are dripping with significant because Harvin was acquired in a March trade with the Vikings, and the last time he played in a game was at CenturyLink Field last Nov. 4 when the Seahawks defeated the Vikings 30-20 – but Harvin did not finish the game after getting a season-ending ankle injury.
Asked about any added motivation attached to returning for this game, Carroll said, “Yeah, because this the next chance he’s got. A couple weeks ago he was ready. He is absolutely a turned-on football player. He wants to go and do everything he can possibly do. He’s got a fantastic attitude about competing and this is the next chance, so this will be the most important one in the world for him.”
And doing everything Harvin can do is a lot. Entering that Week 9 game against the Seahawks last season, he had a league-leading 60 receptions, was averaging 35.7 yards on kickoff returns, had rushed for 74 yards and scored five touchdowns.
“We’ve just got to see where Percy’s at,” said Darrell Bevell, the Seahawks’ offensive coordinator who also was Harvin’s coordinator with the Vikings in 2009-10. “We can’t just go hog-wild and say, ‘Hey, here’s all the things we want to do with Percy.’ We have to just do what we do. That’s kind of our thing. We’re just going to continue to run our offense and then fit him in where we can and start to build it from there.”
But Harvin’s big-play ability is undeniable, when he’s healthy and on his game.
“Dude’s a playmaker, man,” Vikings defensive end Jared Allen said during a conference-call interview. “The dude is so versatile. He’s just tough, shifty. He’s one of those guys if the ball is in his hands he makes plays.”