Buying or Selling Percy Harvin as NFL's Best Offensive Player

Chris RolingFeatured ColumnistOctober 25, 2012

Oct 21, 2012; Minneapolis, MN, USA; Minnesota Vikings wide receiver Percy Harvin (12) celebrates his touchdown during the second quarter against the Arizona Cardinals at the Metrodome. Mandatory Credit: Brace Hemmelgarn-US PRESSWIRE
Brace Hemmelgarn-US PRESSWIRE

Minnesota Vikings wide receiver Percy Harvin is one of the most explosive offensive players in the NFL, but is he the best NFL player in the league?

Harvin is currently in his fourth season, and while he has struggled with injuries, he has managed to emerge as an elite offensive weapon. Before this season, he and running back Adrian Peterson were the only legitimate offensive weapons on the roster. 

With a great start to the 2012 season, with more impressive feats likely incoming, it's safe to claim Harvin as one of the top players in the league. Let's examine whether Harvin deserves the crown as the best offensive player in the league. 



In seven games in 2012, Harvin has amassed 53 receptions for 577 yards and two touchdowns. He also has 73 yards and a touchdown on the ground. 

What makes Harvin such a dynamic player is his versatility. The Vikings coaching staff has creatively used Harvin out of the backfield in a spot where the running back typically lines up. This allows Harvin to either take a handoff or catch a pass from a position the defense is not expecting. 

Harvin has developed into one of the NFL's best thanks to his elite physical talents, but also because of how efficiently the coaching staff has utilized him. 

Harvin also happens to be an elite kick returner, which further adds to his value. So far in 2012, he has returned 14 kicks for 492 yards and one touchdown, including a 105-yard scoring return against the Detroit Lions, as seen in the video above. 

While Harvin has never recorded a 1,000-yard receiving season yet, it's a safe bet that 2012 will be his first.


The Competition 

There are a variety of players that could be considered as the best offensive player in the league. The obvious, such as quarterbacks Aaron Rodgers, Tom Brady and Drew Brees, are up there on the list, as are receivers such as A.J. Green and Calvin Johnson. 

While it's silly to compare Harvin to quarterbacks, it's safe to say he's a top-10 receiver at worst. Green and Johnson are arguably better, but Harvin's versatility more than make up for the gap as a receiver alone. 

What's interesting when stacking Harvin to the rest of the offensive players in the league is that he may not be the best offensive player on the Vikings roster thanks to running back Adrian Peterson. 

Peterson is the best running back in the league and a big reason that Harvin has seen limited coverage as opposing defenses stack the box in an attempt to slow him down. Harvin benefits from Peterson and vice versa, but it's certainly Peterson carrying the relationship. 



It would be a stretch to claim Harvin is the best offensive player in the entire league, but he's much closer than you would think. 

Given the importance of the quarterback position and the fact he may not be the best offensive player on his own team, Harvin is simply not the best all-around offensive player in the NFL—yet. 

Harvin is only 24 years old and is already a top-10 offensive player in the NFL. We're hardly scratching the surface with Harvin, and there's always the potential for the talent around him to further improve, which would only help his case. 

Whether fans around the country realize it or not, Harvin is one of the most electric players in the NFL. He could easily end up being the best at his position or more sooner rather than later.