Seahawks fans received some thrilling news on Thursday, Jan. 9, when team head coach Pete Carroll announced Percy Harvin would play in the team's divisional round matchup against the New Orleans Saints, as reported by ESPN's Adam Schefter:
Seahawks coach Pete Carroll said WR Percy Harvin will play Saturday vs. Saints.— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) January 9, 2014
Harvin played in just one game for the Seahawks in 2013, logging 20 snaps in Week 11 against his old team, the Minnesota Vikings. He caught just one pass—a brilliant one-handed snag on a high pass from quarterback Russell Wilson—for 17 yards.
Unfortunately, he was sidelined for the rest of the regular season when he experienced swelling and fluid buildup on his injured hip, as he detailed, via Curtis Crabtree of Sports Radio KJR:
Harvin said he had swelling and fluid buildup in his hip following the Vikings game that set him back.— Curtis Crabtree (@Curtis_Crabtree) January 9, 2014
Teammates have been fired up about his readiness for this upcoming playoff matchup, however.
Fellow receiver Golden Tate commented about his speed and quickness after a recent practice, and Wilson simply said he "looks unbelievable so far," as noted by Jessamyn McIntyre of ESPN 710 and Bob Condotta of the Seattle Times:
Tate on Harvin: "He's looking really good - he's fast and he's quick...it's amazing to watch him run. I'm mostly excited to see him on KR."— Jessamyn McIntyre (@JessamynESPN) January 3, 2014
Russell Wilson on Percy Harvin in practice: "He looks unbelievable so far."— Bob Condotta (@bcondotta) January 8, 2014
Unfortunately, it's not going to matter how explosive Harvin is on Saturday, Jan. 11, when the Seahawks host the Saints at CenturyLink Field.
Seattle won't be airing it out in this upcoming contest like it did back in Week 13. Wilson passed for 310 yards with three touchdowns and zero interceptions in that contest, and the Seahawks won in blowout fashion, 34-7.
But that game was contested on a cool, clear night, while this upcoming playoff battle will be decided in a beastly storm.
There's a 100 percent chance of rain, according to Weather.com, which also provided these foreboding details: "Winds SW at 20 to 30 mph. Rainfall around a half an inch. Winds could occasionally gust over 50 mph."
This kind of weather isn't conducive to an explosive passing attack.
This is Marshawn Lynch weather.
Even if the game were being held in pristine conditions, fans would have been smart to temper expectations for Harvin's return.
It's likely he won't be a full participant, as Chris Wesseling of NFL.com pointed out: "Harvin won't be an every-down player after playing just 20 snaps all season, but his play-making ability will be a shot in the arm for an aerial attack that has struggled down the stretch."
That "aerial attack" will be grounded for the most part against New Orleans.
On the plus side for Seahawks fans, the Saints won't fare any better against Seattle's "Legion of Boom" secondary, but I digress.
Harvin will _____ in the rain at CenturyLink vs. the Saints.
Harvin's return is certainly something to be excited about for the Seahawks and their fans.
Provided they win against the Saints, he'll likely be an integral part of the team's plans going forward into the NFC Championship Game (unless another huge storm rolls in). Even if he's not 100 percent healthy yet, his mere presence on the field helps the rest of the offense.
But nobody should expect him to light up the stat sheet in the divisional round in the torrential rain. Another one-catch outing won't be shocking, while Lynch and the team's power-rushing attack takes over the game.
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