The Seattle Seahawks -- already with one of the most dominant offenses in the NFL -- arguably just became the most complete, as well, by acquiring speed demon Percy Harvin from Minnesota. While rookie quarterback Russell Wilson nearly propelled Seattle to the NFC Championship, it was also apparent that he desperately needed a quick receiver not just to make plays, but simply to get open.
Very few wideouts in the league possess Harvin's unique acceleration, coupled with soft hands and after-catch explosiveness. And Harvin is a perfect fit for the slot in the read-option, a scheme in which he excelled during his collegiate days at Florida.
According to ESPN Stats & Info, the Seahawks totaled 1,313 yards after the catch last season, which ranked 30th in the league. Harvin, meanwhile, who's only 24 years old, had 528 yards in that category, despite missing seven games, which was still good enough for fifth among wide receivers. Before the ankle injury, he was an MVP candidate.
What the move does for Seattle is to make its offense that much more nimble. As Wilson developed into a legitimate ace in the pocket during the second half of the season, offensive coordinator Darrell Bevell -- who was the OC with Minnesota when the team drafted Harvin in 2009 -- often employed just one tight end alongside three wide receivers. Adding Harvin to a slew of talented but not game-breaking receivers (e.g., Sidney Rice and Golden Tate) will improve every facet of this offense. This backfield now becomes incredibly dynamic with the trio of Wilson, first-team All-Pro running back Marshawn Lynch and Harvin, who can run routes at every level of the field.
The price for Harvin, who won Offensive Rookie of the Year in 2009, was steep, to be sure, given Seattle's track record in recent drafts (four Pro Bowl players over the past three years) and the fact that Harvin will be a free agent after next season. The Vikings receive three draft picks, including a first-rounder (No. 25 overall) and a seventh-rounder this year, and a mid-round pick in 2014. But you have to take chances to win in this league, especially when your window is as big as Seattle's.
Very few players in this league have the sheer talent of Harvin, who has already amassed 3,300 yards and 20 receiving touchdowns, along with four rushing scores and five more on kickoff returns -- which is tops in the NFL since 2009. While he hasn't been the most durable and has struggled at times with migraines, Harvin is worth the risk. With him lining up all over the field, the Seahawks have a complete team in all three phases and have positioned themselves all the better for another run at the Super Bowl.