The Minnesota Vikings and Seattle Seahawks have agreed to a deal that will send star wide receiver Percy Harvin to Seattle for draft picks, according to Jay Glazer of Fox Sports.
The Seahawks and Vikings have agreed to a trade that send Harvin to Seattle for draft picks, pending Harvin passing a physical— Jay Glazer (@JayGlazer) March 11, 2013
Adam Schefter of ESPN reported that the deal does depend on the Seahawks coming to a long-term extension with Harvin, though that doesn't appear to be a major obstacle.
Trade bw MINN and SEA for Percy Harvin contingent upon a new contract for Harvin; contract likely to be completed in next 48 hours.— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) March 11, 2013
Minnesota appears to have acted swiftly in light of the most recent news about Harvin's displeasure with the franchise.
Harvin reportedly asked to be traded around March 10 after being unhappy with his future role in the offense and some things involving the coaching and medical staff, according to Sid Hartman of the Minneapolis Star-Tribune.
Hearing that Harvin wanted to be dealt shouldn't come as a surprise to anyone in the organization or to the fans, as he said (via ESPN.com) on the first day of minicamp last year that he wasn't happy with some things in the organization:
I just put it this way, there's a lot of different things that have to be sorted out. Just haven't been really happy lately. We've got a couple of things to work on. I'm here in the classroom. We'll go from there.
With Harvin seemingly unable to find some level of contentment with the Vikings, the team did what it felt was in its best interest for 2013 and beyond.
The Seahawks, who were the talk of the NFL at the end of the regular season before losing to Atlanta in the NFC divisional round, add yet another playmaker to an improving offense that looks ready to take control of the NFC West.
The deal appears to be a win-win for both sides, so let's take a look at what this reported trade does for both the Vikings and Seahawks.
How This Deal Helps the Seahawks
Which team got the better end of this deal?
There was already a case to be made that the Seahawks were the best team in the NFC heading into 2013. We all know how good that defense is and will continue to be. Meanwhile, Russell Wilson took the league by storm last year and only figures to get better.
Adding another dynamic weapon to an offense that includes Wilson, Marshawn Lynch and Sidney Rice only makes the Seahawks that much more dangerous.
Harvin can be the perfect complement to Rice on the outside. Rice is the big-play threat down the field that Wilson can just throw it up to and know that something good is going to happen.
Harvin, on the other hand, can play close to the line of scrimmage and be to the Seahawks what Wes Welker has been for the New England Patriots; he catches the ball in traffic and has such great elusiveness to run after the catch.
The NFC West has been steadily improving over the last few years, with San Francisco winning 13 games two years and making it to the Super Bowl last year. St. Louis is getting a lot better on the strength of a hard-hitting defense that is only going to keep improving.
But the Seahawks have shown a willingness to make big, bold decisions that will put them over the top. Harvin is just the latest piece of the puzzle.
The Seahawks could get themselves in trouble if they pay the price that Harvin apparently wants on a long-term extension.
According to Jason Cole of Yahoo! Sports, Harvin will be looking for a contract that pays him in the vicinity of what Calvin Johnson averages per season ($16.5 million).
As good as Harvin is, he isn't in Calvin Johnson's league. The Seahawks can't overpay to bring him in, but assuming they don't give into his demands, they will be fine.
How This Deal Helps the Vikings
Nothing that Harvin has done has given the Vikings any indication they had a shot at re-signing him after the season, not that they would want to given his attitude and comments over the years.
However, this move does leave a rather large hole on the outside that the Vikings will have to fill if they want to improve their passing game.
That hole could be filled by one of the best receivers on the free-agent market, as Jeff Darlington of NFL.com states that free agent Mike Wallace will be on their radar when the signing period starts on Tuesday.
If the Vikings are able to sign Wallace, it will make losing Harvin that much easier. According to Hartman's report, the Vikings were $16 million under the salary cap before making this trade. They didn't need to free up any money to make a competitive offer to Wallace, though it certainly helps their case that they have more to spend.
Even though Harvin is a more dynamic playmaker, Wallace is far better at getting down the field and could open up a lot of things in the Vikings offense if they get him signed.
Not only that, but the Vikings turned Harvin, who was likely around for just one more year anyway, into draft picks. For a team that still has a lot of holes to fill, despite making the playoffs last season, accruing picks will help them sustain that success.