It was reported today that the Vikings have had enough with Percy Harvin, and will likely look to trade him this offseason. A report from a local Minnesota news outlet states that Harvin and head coach Leslie Frazier had a “blowup” and are not on good terms, and therefore the team is looking to move on without Harvin on the team. Harvin was well on his way to a 1000 yard season in 2012 before injuries, and an apparent issue with the head coach, ended his year prematurely.
So is this a player the Buccaneers should pursue in a trade? There are teams out there that will have a bigger need at the wide receiver position than the Buccaneers, but that shouldn’t prohibit the Bucs from entering discussions with the Vikings. Harvin is a dynamic athlete who runs good routes and shows excellent hands, and also contributes well as a return man. He would be an great fit in the slot for Tampa Bay, as he would be able to stretch the field and find seams in defenses, forcing opponents to focus on the speed of Harvin matched up against a nickel or dime defensive back. This would potentially open up more space for Vincent Jackson and Mike Williams, as any of the three receivers could make a play deep down the field. Defenses would have a nightmare of a time accounting for all three receiving options for the Buccaneers, if this trade were to go down.
The question is, what would the Vikings demand for their star receiver? He is going to be a free agent in 2014, and will likely demand much more than the 3 million dollars he is set to make in 2013. The limited time left on his deal takes a chunk out of his trade value, but a season of Percy Harvin is still a valuable trade chip for Minnesota. A high draft pick will likely be the cost for the former Gator star, so consider the cost for the Buccaneers to have to surrender a top 50 draft pick for Percy.
A majority of the teams that will discuss a trade for Harvin will do so in hopes of locking him up long-term, but this is something that would be unwise for the Buccaneers. With Mike Williams out of contract after 2013, as well, it would be unwise to shell out big contracts to both receivers. If the Buccaneers believe that they will not reach an agreement with Williams before 2013 begins, then bringing in Harvin gives them another in-house receiver with whom they can negotiate a long-term contract. However, it could also upset Williams to be “replaced”, and give Harvin free reign to the Buccaneers checkbook in negotiations. Should the Buccaneers be approaching a deal with Williams already, they will likely leave thoughts of a Harvin deal to other front offices, and focus on finding a cheaper, less injury-prone slot receiver.
As a Gator fan, I would love to see Percy Harvin in red and pewter, but I also understand the complications and risks. Harvin would likely be a one year rental in Tampa Bay, and I would hate to see the Buccaneers compromise the 2013 draft to get a season’s worth of a slot receiver. It would be wise for Mark Dominik to call the Vikings and kick the tires, but I doubt that Harvin will be returning to play football in central Florida this offseason.
Would you trade for Percy Harvin? If so, what would you give up to get him? And please don’t say LeGarrette Blount, the Vikings have the best running back in the NFL and a more than competent backup.