Labels are hard for athletes to shed.
Harvin plans to do just that this season. He wants to thrive as strictly a wideout, but must stay healthy and produce on the field to achieve that goal.
The 27-year-old Harvin flashed in his first four seasons with the Vikings, but never reached 1,000 yards receiving. Injuries and migraines limited him with the Seahawks, where he was utilized more as a jack-of-all-trades rather than a featured wide receiver. He has played in just 14 games and caught 52 passes for 500 yards over the last two seasons combined.
Rex Ryan is seeking greater production from Harvin and is planning to line him up extensively on the outside rather than in the slot.
"He's a playmaker and I think Percy now [is] just scratching the surface of what kind of outside receiver he can be," Ryan told the team website. "I'm excited to see how he can elevate his game at that position."
So is Harvin.
"Aside from the first two years I got in the league I've been just a gadget guy," he said. "...I think this year a lot of people are going to see the end result of [playing exclusively wide receiver]."
After not attending any of this week's OTA sessions due to a non-injury issue,
Harvin signed with the Bills in the offseason. In 2014, he totaled 51 receptions for 483 yards.
"No, there's something else [besides an injury]," Ryan said. "We'll let them address it, if they want to."
Harvin, who was traded to the Jets from Seattle midway through the 2014 season and then signed with the Bills in the offseason, was eager to reunite with coach Rex Ryan despite a shaky quarterback situation.
"The world has not seen my best ball yet," Harvin said. "That's why coming in here was so important to me."
Harvin totaled 51 receptions for 483 yards last season with Seattle and New York.
"What we're trying to do is take a little pressure off Sammy Watkins," Ryan said. "You might recall last year Sammy got double almost every snap. You roll your coverage to him and all that. With a guy like Percy Harvin that's now going to be difficult to do. Percy can catch a slant and take it the distance and he can go over the top of you. He's a game breaker."
Ryan added that the offensive play-calling will be determined based on what the defense is doing.
"If you want to stop our run by keeping all the big guys in there then so be it, we'll have ways to hurt you outside," he said.
|2014||New York Jets||8||8||29||350||12.1||45||1||5||2||15|
|2014||New York Jets||8||8||22||110||5.0||13||0||0||7|
|2014||New York Jets||8||20||495||24.8||65||0||2|
|2014||New York Jets||8||1||1.0||0||0||0||0||0.0||0||0||0|
|Year||Team||G||Fum||Lost||Fum Forced||Own Rec||Opp Rec||Yds||Tot Rec||TD|
|2014||New York Jets||8||1||0||0||0||0||0||0||0|
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