'Have mercy,' Percy Harvin is here
September, 5, 2014
By Terry Blount | ESPN.com
SEATTLE -- Moments after the Seattle Seahawks easily defeated the Green Bay Packers 36-16 Thursday night, quarterback Russell Wilson had a clear message when interviewed on national TV.
"Lord have mercy, we've got Percy," Wilson said on NBC.
Receiver Percy Harvin is the X factor for the Seahawks offense, the man everyone hoped would be the difference-maker for the team, but about whom no one knew for sure in brief glimpses of his talent one season ago.
Now they know.
Harvin did it all in front of the frenzied CenturyLink Field crowd, catching seven passes for 59 yards, rushing for 41 yards on four carries and running back three kickoffs for 60 yards. If you're counting, that's 160 yards on 14 touches.
"They can't stop him," said Seahawks middle linebacker Bobby Wagner. "They can't tackle him. He's too fast to catch him. He's just a great player when he's healthy."
Being healthy is the key. Harvin played in only one regular-season game last year after undergoing hip surgery in August 2013. He came back in Week 10, aggravated his hip and didn't play again until the playoffs.
He now says he is healthier than he has ever been as an NFL player. In fact, he said he hasn't felt this good since he was in high school.
A healthy Harvin is a very dangerous thing.
"This is what everybody envisioned, to finally get everybody on the field healthy all at once," Harvin said. "Everything is finally clicking now. We are just finding different ways to get all our playmakers the ball."
They are few playmakers in football like Harvin, who makes it look as though everyone else around him is playing in slow motion. And Harvin usually is in motion, seemingly fast motion, often getting to the outside before anyone gets nears him.
"The jet sweep was pretty effective today, and we were able to get the edge," Harvin said. "It's added another dynamic to the offense."
The Seahawks offense was good last season without Harvin. They are great with Harvin. You have to pick your poison. Key on Harvin, and Marshawn Lynch will run by you. He had 110 yards Thursday on 20 carries.
"Percy makes everybody else around him better,'' said Seahawks free safety Earl Thomas. "When Percy runs [across the backfield] and Marshawn cuts, they don't know who's getting the ball. It's happening so quick, and I know it's very hard on defenses."
Harvin is only one piece of a team loaded with exceptional athletes. And you can forget all that talk about the Seahawks becoming complacent or getting fat, rich and happy after their Super Bowl triumph.
This team is as determined as it ever has been. The defense still can dominate, and Wilson continues to thrive as the team leader. And here's the really scary part: With a healthy Harvin added to mix, they might be better than a season ago.
"He's just such an explosive athlete," Seahawks coach Pete Carroll said of Harvin.
"We had a ton of different ways to show how we're fitting him into our offense. It's what we've been hoping for. There's a bunch of other stuff that we'll do. We're just getting started."