That was apparent Wednesday during conference-call interviews with Vikings coach Leslie Frazier and defensive end Jared Allen. The Vikings play the Seahawks at CenturyLink Field on Sunday, and it’s possible that Harvin could make his debut for his new team against his old team.
Harvin, the essence of versatility because of his ability to be used as a running back and kickoff returner in addition playing wide receiver, was acquired by the Seahawks in a March trade with the Vikings. But he has yet to play after having hip surgery on Aug. 1. Harvin was added to the 53-man roster Monday, but his status for Sunday’s game remains in question.
There is, however, no questioning that Harvin is remembered – and fondly – by this former coach and teammate.
Asked about the possibly of playing against Harvin, Allen offered a cackle that bordered on wicked before saying, “It will be fun. Percy, he’s a heckuva player, man. He’s so dynamic in the things he can do.
“But it’s not really about one player. We’ve got to go out there and we’ve got to prepare to try to win a game. Obviously Percy is a phenomenal player and our odds maybe go up a little bit if he doesn’t play.”
Allen then laughed again before adding, “So tell him (not) to get healthy.”
When healthy, Harvin is indeed a force – and a versatile one, at that.
“Percy is such an explosive player, lezlie” Frazier said. “Then there’s his ability to play multiple positions. We’d line him up not only at wide receiver, as an outside receiver, but we’d put him in the slot. He’d line up in the backfield. He was just as much in the backfield as he was lined up at receiver. So he gave us so much flexibility in our offense. And once he touched the ball, he was a threat to score every time he touched the ball. He provided a lot of positives for us.”
All of that from a 5-foot-11, 184-pound player who doesn’t necessarily look capable of proving all of that.
“His heart is pretty big. He plays much bigger than his size and he plays so hard. He’s a determined player. His determination kind of sets him apart. He really believes that he can score every time he touches the ball, and it shows in the way he plays.”
But the Vikings have an advantage in preparing for the Percy Possibility, right? Or is that thought overblown?
“I think it’s overplayed in this case, when there’s no tape to show how they might use him,” Frazier said. “We’re very familiar with Percy’s talent and how we used him here. But we have no idea of what they’re going to do with him. So I think it’s a little bit overblown in that respect.”
But it’s not overblown to say he left his mark on the Vikings.
“The dude is so versatile,” Allen said. “He’s just tough, shifty. He’s one of those guys if the ball is in his hands he makes plays.”