Brace Hemmelgarn-US PRESSWIRE
The Vikings wide receiver is an impact offensive player, something the team desperately needs at wideout.
Whether it's the age-old phrase about grabbing the brass ring or Eminem rhythmically reminding his audience that they'll only get one shot at, well, whatever it is they're after, the point has been made again and again -- jump on an opportunity if one presents itself. This offseason, the Minnesota Vikings are apparently offering one up to the entire NFL and a team like the Kansas City Chiefs would be foolish to miss out on such a chance.
Percy Harvin is the prize available to the highest bidder, and one unnamed NFL exec has reportedly given Harvin a third-round grade at best. That's a small price to pay for such an on-field impact. Harvin will have his detractors, and rightfully so, but on the field, only a handful of players can impact the game like he can. That means a team like the Chiefs would do well to chase him.
The reason is two-fold, both for what Harvin brings and what the Chiefs need.
What Harvin Brings
Those who scoff at Harvin will note that he brings baggage, and point to the fact that the Vikes will try to get rid of him even though they're not exactly loaded in the passing game. He's had attitude problems his entire playing career, had spats with coaches and skipped team activities. He can be injury prone and only played in nine games last season. He also wants a lot of money.
However, there's no denying his elite abilities on the field. Even in those nine games, Harvin had 62 catches for 677 yards and three touchdowns. Pro Football Focus notes that Harvin led the league in 8.7 yards after the catch and broke an incredible 22 tackles at receiver. He's electric in the return game as well and can be the dynamic, versatile offensive piece that Andy Reid focuses his game plan around. Ben Stockwell at PFF describes Harvin best
The bottom line is this - when you trade for Percy Harvin you are trading for the most dangerous and versatile offensive weapon in the NFL ... His production this season was absolutely astronomical, and he is able to blend the attributes of a runner, with the explosive ability to work in these new read option offenses, with the receiving ability to make plays all over the field."
What The Chiefs Need
The worst team in the NFL has several obvious needs, none greater than replacing the starting quarterback. However, the quarterback has to have someone to throw to and the wide receiver position is an absolute mess. Consider the following:
1. Dwayne Bowe could edit and leave the Chiefs without one of the greatest receivers in team history. Say what you want about Bowe's drops, baggage or attitude, but no single receiver in Chiefs history has produced such incredible results from the outset. In addition, there's not a single receiver the team could look to as a sure thing after Bowe on the roster.
2. Jon Baldwin has 41 total receptions in two seasons despite playing for a team that has practically begged someone to step up alongside Bowe.
3. Devon Wylie was selected as a lightning-quick slot receiver, but six receptions for 53 yards means that he's yet to show what he can do for the team.
4. Steve Breaston, the veteran wideout with a $5 million cap hit, caught one more pass than Wylie all season.
In short, Bowe and Breaston could be gone, Baldwin could stall and Wylie could bust. The risk potential for a complete lack of receiving options for the Chiefs offense is too great. Opponents must respect the pass if the Chiefs are to give Jamaal Charles some running room and develop a rookie quarterback (assuming they take one in the draft). Harvin eases all of that pressure.
The price is right in the Chiefs wheelhouse if they like Harvin given that the team also has a compensatory third round choice from letting Brandon Carr walk a year ago.