Like Randy Moss, Percy Harvin landed in the Vikings’ laps when character concerns caused him to slide in the draft. Like Moss, Harvin had a great rookie season and looked like he was on his way to a long, productive career in Minnesota.
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Like Moss, Harvin was ultimately traded out of Minnesota when his attitude issues began outweighing his on-field production.
Moss was traded to Oakland but finally wound up with the New England Patriots where he made a Super Bowl run with Tom Brady. Could Harvin’s career take another Moss-like turn and land him alongside Brady and Bill Belichick?
This is the rumor currently making the rounds. Jason La Canfora reports that it’s unlikely the New York Jets will retain Harvin’s services after this year, and the insider expects the Patriots to make a run at the mercurial receiver.
As CBSSports.com points out, the Patriots would have to clear some serious cap room in order to add Harvin. But teams like the Patriots have a magical way of clearing all the cap room they need when they covet a player.
After last year’s Super Bowl run, you wonder why the Patriots would bother with a player of Harvin’s baggage. Then again, the Pats do have a reputation of making it work with players who are considered problematic.
Moss was just one of many “baggage” players who have flourished in New England over the years. In 2007, Moss set a single-season record by catching 23 TDs from Brady. The Patriots nearly won the Super Bowl that season, falling just short after a miracle comeback by the Giants.
Hail Florida Hail
Of course it doesn’t always work out in New England with receivers who have been let go other places. Chad Johnson notably was a huge bust there, and Brandon Lloyd didn’t exactly burn it up as Tom Brady’s supposed deep threat.
Moss himself was ultimately let go by New England when his production sagged and his contract situation became an issue. The Patriots memorably traded him back to the Vikings for a third round pick, but Moss lasted only a few weeks in his second tenure with the Vikings before infamously being cut by Brad Childress.
Percy Harvin’s own post-Vikings career has already included one Super Bowl appearance with the Seattle Seahawks. But this past season the Seahawks decided Harvin wasn’t worth the headache and shipped him to the Jets. Seattle was vindicated in their decision to dump Harvin after their second Super Bowl appearance in two years.
It would seem fitting if Harvin, who hasn’t exactly lit it up since being traded by the Vikings, got the last laugh by having a huge year in New England and going back to the Super Bowl. But knowing Harvin’s habits, it’s just as likely he would struggle in New England, where receivers are expected to actually know the playbook.
I personally would pass on Harvin were I the Patriots, but they don’t need my advice or anyone else’s. They sort of know what they are doing up there.
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