Ready to begin another chapter of his NFL career, the Seattle Seahawks introduced new addition Percy Harvin this afternoon, with head coach Pete Carroll and John Schneider sitting on either side of the 24-year-old receiver.
Making the trip with him to Seattle were Harvin’s girlfriend Janine Williams and close childhood friend Ronta Johnson.
Pro Football Talk is reporting that Harvin will receive a six-year, $67 million, with $14.5 million fully guaranteed, and $11 million more for injury.
“It’s been a big relief,” Harvin said. “I’m very grateful for this opportunity that I’m given to come here and compete with some of the great players that they already have in place with the program – a playoff team. This is a dream come true for me and my family.”
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With the No. 12 retired in honor of the 12th Man, Harvin will wear No. 11, his number in high school.
Both Carroll and Schneider said they consider Harvin like a first round pick in this year’s draft, considering the draft compensation required to pry him from Minnesota in a trade.
The one word that kept coming regarding Harvin was versatility. When asked who had a style of running growing up that was similar to the way he runs, Harvin offered some interesting choices – Bo Jackson and Marshall Faulk.
Carroll said that Harvin already met with quarterback Russell Wilson, who of course was at the facility watching film when the new receiver arrived.
“He was in the film room waiting for him,” joked Carroll.
Harvin also met with good friend Sidney Rice from his days in Minnesota, and tight end Zach Miller at the VMAC.
“From the moment that this thing was put together, Russell was already texting me about things we were going to do this offseason,” Harvin said. “We’re set to go in California to workout already. And those are the type of things I love. I can tell the guys here love football. … To play with an up-and-coming quarterback like Russell, who guys are comparing him preparation-wise to Bret Favre – when I hear people compare him to Bret Favre, I listen.”
Carroll said that the plan also is for Harvin to return kicks. Schneider confirmed that kick returner Leon Washington had been released.
“He did a phenomenal job here,” Schneider said about Washington. “Fans love him. He such a pro. He really handled himself with extreme class when Pete and I talked with him. He understood what we were doing. The first thing you would say about him is that he’s a pro. We’ll miss him.”
Schneider said his scouting staff had been monitoring the situation with Harvin in Minnesota since last season, in case a possibility to secure the electric receiver arose.
And he brushed off the idea that the draft compensation Seattle gave up – a first and seventh rounder this year, and a third rounder in 2014 – was an issue.
“Oh stop,” Schneider said, with a laugh. “We still have eight draft picks. I understand why you would look at the compensation, but this is a highly unique player. And for us to be able to – if you were to play Percy into this draft, I think there would be some very strong arguments to how high he would go. And it would pretty darn high.
“And so we’re sitting at 25. And for us to be able to even move up five spots, it would take probably a third round draft pick. So really this is kind of a slam dunk for us.”
Schneider said new salary cap specialist Matt Thomas has a strong relationship with folks in the personnel department in Minnesota, which helped in the negotiations.
Harvin also addressed the reports about his run-ins with Vikings head coach Leslie Frazier, along with the rumor that he wanted out of Minnesota.
“I have great respect for everybody in that program, from top to bottom,” Harvin said. “Yes, we had some bumps in the road. But I respect them, and I feel like they respect me from the dialogue I got back from them. Me and Coach Frazier were in direct contact throughout this whole time. So me and him still to this day have a great relationship. He still texts me.”
Harvin also said the migraine headaches are behind him, and that he hasn’t had one for two years.