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Cris Carter: Vikings are better off without Percy Harvin

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Cris Carter, the former Vikings receiver who was elected last month to the Pro Football Hall of Fame, is known for making controversial comments about current NFL receivers, from saying Calvin Johnson is not elite to saying no one other than Larry Fitzgerald deserves to be compared to Carter himself. Now Carter has made an interesting comment about an active wide receiver once again.

Asked by the Minneapolis Star-Tribune about the Vikings trading Percy Harvin to Seattle, Carter said the Vikings will actually be in better shape now.

I think the organization did the right thing,” Carter said. “I’m not surprised, given the situation with him not being happy and there being so little chance of a contract extension for the type of money he wants. So they’re better off, especially with a young quarterback, trading Percy and getting something for him compared to going through the season rolling the dice.”

Carter noted that getting a first-round draft pick and two additional picks for Harvin will help the franchise build depth, and that all three of those picks combined will cost the Vikings less than what the Seahawks are going to pay Harvin on his new contract. Carter also noted that the Vikings only had Harvin for nine games last season, and that they went 5-2 without him over the final seven games of the regular season.

“Chicago got an elite receiver in Brandon Marshall and it only cost them two third-round picks,” Carter said. “So I think the Vikings did well. And they’re able to keep their salary cap intact rather than paying $11 million to $13 million a year to a guy that you don’t know how much he’s going to play. With Percy’s style, he’s going to get hurt. And don’t forget, the Vikings also had a lot of success without Percy at the end of last season.”

According to Carter, the Vikings can get better at receiver in the draft and should only go shopping for a receiver in free agency if they can do it at an affordable price. So while Vikings fans may be concerned about the loss of Harvin, Carter says they should just relax.

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55 Responses to “Cris Carter: Vikings are better off without Percy Harvin”
  1. godofwine330 says: Mar 12, 2013 9:43 AM

    Considering what they got for him? Hell yeah they are better off without him. Isn’t it ironic that a guy who had constant migranes was a headache? He was, and will be an average receiver. He has never been in the top 10 in any offensive category. They got a #1 plus more picks. Their GM fleeced the Browns last year, and is turning out to be one helluva GM.

  2. raiderlyfe510 says: Mar 12, 2013 9:44 AM

    I don’t pay that much attention to the Vikes, but it seems like ever since Randy Moss went back to the Vikings Harvin has been a problem child for them. It may have started before Moss’ arrival, but I thought he was pretty much a model player before Moss got there.

  3. fwippel says: Mar 12, 2013 9:46 AM

    Carter is right about this. Whether Harvin played or held out this year, the following year he’s a free agent; he leaves and the Vikings get nothing in return.

    Let Seattle have this headache. Meanwhile, the Vikings get the Seahawk’s first round pick, and a chance to draft a playmaker to take Harvin’s spot. If Harvin was causing such huge problems, it’s better to trade him now than letting him play out his contract.

  4. justafanofitall says: Mar 12, 2013 9:49 AM

    Harvin has been a problem since Moss left. Needs to grow up. Brett made him a star and now he thinks everyone owes him. Better off without the headache on board. Should be able to pick up some quality WR in free agency or the draft. Still not sure on their QB…but with the right coaching should continue to improve.

  5. purplepunisher says: Mar 12, 2013 9:50 AM

    I loved watching Harvin but Carter is right. The Vikings played thier best ball after Harvin went on IR. We have a ton of great young talent and now have lots of picks to continue to build a young powerful team.

  6. ravenmuscle says: Mar 12, 2013 9:53 AM

    Carter says relax but all we’re hearing now is that Mike Wallace will be going to the Vikes for $13 million a year. Carter should have waited until after 4:00 today to share his brilliant analysis.

  7. romosmicrodongs says: Mar 12, 2013 9:54 AM

    this draft is deep on WRs and DBs, Vikes made a good move. seahawks looking good on paper. dream team maybe? seahawks gonna win it all next year?

    seattle dreamteam unstoppable #hashtagsfordreamteams

  8. amanistumor says: Mar 12, 2013 9:55 AM

    While I don’t always agree with CC (Megatron quote) he’s spot on this one.

    Sucks because PH can be a great talent but it was just gonna blow up here. He’ll probably be awesome over there in SEA and all will be well.

    When you think as him as a top WR and stud KR/PR the money he’s going to get isn’t that bad. With them cutting Leon Wash’ it makes sense.

  9. Rick Spielman is a Magician says: Mar 12, 2013 9:58 AM

    As long as the Vikings use the draft picks and money they save by not paying Percy to bring in a good rookie and a name free agent, this trade should work out fine for them. I hope we don’t wind up with the next Troy Williamson and Bernard Berrian!

  10. trollhammer20 says: Mar 12, 2013 9:59 AM

    They can get a better receiver in the draft in the mid-20s? Sure they can. They could also wind up with the next AJ Jenkins or Devin Thomas.

  11. steelfan1 says: Mar 12, 2013 10:00 AM

    Carter you are spot on. You want to know what happens to a team who has a troubled receiver who is over valued, its called Mike Wallace and we got nothing in return. The vikings got 3 picks for Harvin and one of them is a first rounder.

  12. unkrautsalat says: Mar 12, 2013 10:01 AM

    “Has never been in the top 10 in any offensive category”?! He lead the league last year in broken tackles – despite missing 7 games! He had the highest YAC per reception last season, and returned more kickoffs than anybody in the league since he got drafted. I agree that he wants too much money, but Harvin is a great player, and the stats back it up.

  13. chrisbrunson17 says: Mar 12, 2013 10:01 AM

    The Vikes were better off without Randy Moss too…. Troy Williamson turned into areal difference maker and they dominated the NFC north without Moss distractions.

  14. purplehaze12 says: Mar 12, 2013 10:01 AM

    Hurts like hell, but it was the right thing to do.

  15. Stupid Lions Fan says: Mar 12, 2013 10:01 AM

    Who is Chris Carter still stealing paychecks from? How does he keep a job as an analyst. First Megatron isn’t a top 5 receiver, now this. If you think ANY team is better without Harvin then you just aren’t paying attention.

  16. notaslappy says: Mar 12, 2013 10:02 AM

    Both teams made out on this trade. The Seahawks got arguably the most versatile player in the nfl for a team that is really close to being a Superbowl team.
    The Vikings got cap room and a surplus of picks. As much as it pains me to admit it, Carter is right.

  17. rmfp1978 says: Mar 12, 2013 10:06 AM

    Im not saying it wasnt a good move for the vikes because it was but im sick of people saying they did well without him last season. They rode on the coat tails of AP their passing game sucked. While AP is probably the best rb ive ever seen I just dont think he will be abl to keep that up. Ponder needs to step up. Their tight end and rb is the only offensive threats they have so they better step up in FA or by draft

  18. seals1 says: Mar 12, 2013 10:06 AM

    The bridges were already burned and money was not going to change Percy’s attitude towards the team, coaches and front office. Great player,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,tainted situation. Sad day for the Purple no matter how things turn out.

  19. anonymouslyanonymouscommentor says: Mar 12, 2013 10:07 AM

    Seems to me like Harvin’s off-the-field issues are being exaggerated. Darrell Bevell was in Minnesota Harvin’s rookie year, they know what they’re getting. He also apparently had the respect of his teammates. And from what I’ve heard, he’s all about winning, not about himself: apparently he got into an argument with Frazier over a lack of carries for AP in the second half of one game. That’s not how true divas operate. I think Harvin will be much more content when he’s winning games and catching passes from Russell Wilson instead of Christian Ponder.

  20. dennisatunity says: Mar 12, 2013 10:07 AM

    It’s all about fit. This is one of those instances in which Seattle and the Vikings both won. Harvin didn’t work with the Vikings but Seattle has enough former Vikings players and coaches who said, “Harvin will fit with Seattle.” Seattle was one of the very best teams in the NFL at the end of the season last year and Harvin will take them over the top. And I also hope that the Vikings are outstanding without him. Everybody wins!

  21. guruvious says: Mar 12, 2013 10:10 AM

    Harvin and Sherman in the same room. I’m getting a migraine already.

  22. vikesfan320 says: Mar 12, 2013 10:10 AM

    I was sad to see Harvin go because he’s such a rare talent and so explosive, but unfortunately that explosiveness carried with him into off-field altercations. As of now, it was the right move. Moving forward, it all depends on what the Vikings do with those picks and in the free agent market. I wasn’t upset when the Vikings traded Moss because he was becoming a distraction, but then they turned their first round pick into Troy Williamson and… well let’s just say that didn’t work out. If the Vikings get Cruz or Wallace or somebody like that, I’d say they definitely made the right move. If they end up drafting Troy Williamson 2.0 in this draft, I’ll end up drinking a lot more than I did last season.

  23. wludford says: Mar 12, 2013 10:10 AM

    With 3 draft picks in their pocket, and a locker room cancer off the team, the Vikings are certainly better off because they can afford to replace Harvin, and more, with what the got for him.

    If they wanna pay Wallace what they would’ve paid Harvin had he stayed, fine. Harvin is the better talent, but Wallace is a better fit for the Viking’s offensive scheme and isn’t as injury-prone as Harvin.

    If not, they’ve got $12m more in salary cap than they would’ve had if they signed Harvin, plus 3 draft picks to spend on bring quality, high character guys on the roster.

    It’s all good.

  24. paulnoga says: Mar 12, 2013 10:11 AM

    Harvin hasn’t signed a contract yet. he still has one year on his contract and then a team can tag him as a restricted free agent. Seattle thinks they can sweet talk him to play for less. No chance.
    What about all the great Seahawks defenders that deserve more next year, but Harvin takes up 12% of their salary cap?
    Harvin wants top dollar – Fitzgerald or Megatron money. if he doesn’t get all he wants, he will be disturbed in Seattle.
    The Seahawks self-induced a cancer in the locker room.

  25. beastmode5150 says: Mar 12, 2013 10:17 AM

    I love when people say the opposite of their true feelings when they are spurned. CC must be on the sauce again. Hope Minnesota is looking forward to an 8 win season and watching the Seahawks in the Super Bowl.

  26. melikefootball says: Mar 12, 2013 10:17 AM

    Who is this Chris Carter guy?

  27. Shaun Poore says: Mar 12, 2013 10:19 AM

    Not sure why this would be controversial. Vikes give up a beast who wasn’t gonna re-sign next year for solid draft picks which if any hit will give them talents like Harvin on the cheap. This isn’t fantasy football gotta fit all your talent in the salary cap, Vikes w/out a doubt are better off.

  28. amaf21 says: Mar 12, 2013 10:19 AM

    Thanks for your insight Capt. Obvious.

  29. filthymcnasty1 says: Mar 12, 2013 10:21 AM

    Talent like that is viewed as overrated in MN. Hey – they managed to stumble into the playoffs with no talent at QB.

  30. redbearwoodall says: Mar 12, 2013 10:22 AM

    At least he has plausible reasoning behind this claim; unlike his thing about Calvin Johnson.

  31. trippymane says: Mar 12, 2013 10:27 AM

    Lol this why the vikings will blow for the next decade.

    Vikings fan: wow great trade! Our second best player who could’ve been mvp for a 1st round draft pick that is useless cause our gms cant draft… Oh and a 7th rounder thats not going to make the team!!! Yeahhh superbowl here we come #vikings

    Lol you guys enjoy finishing last in your division. While seattle wins a superbowl.

  32. pcarlson77 says: Mar 12, 2013 10:31 AM

    While I think moving Harvin is a positive, given the situation… The statements about his average play could not be more wrong.

    Consider:
    In 2011, Percy Harvin nearly set a single-season record for most return yards per kickoff return in post-merger history with 32.5.

    In 2012, he demolished that record, with 35.9 yards per kick return.

    Percy Harvin and Gale Sayers are the only two players in NFL history with 20+ scrimmage touchdowns and 5+ kick return touchdowns in their first four NFL seasons.

    Since entering the league, Harvin has had the third-most all-purpose yards, despite playing fewer games than the top six players.

    No wide receiver has more all-purpose yards in their first four years in NFL history. He has 7168 all-purpose yards, and DeSean Jackson comes in second, with 1460 yards fewer

    Only one player in NFL history has had more all-purpose yards per game in their first four years than Harvin—Terry Metcalf in 1973-76.

    Only eight players in NFL history have more yards from scrimmage per game in their first four years than Harvin

    If Percy Harvin retired today, he would hold the record among all retired players for most all-purpose yards per game.

    Only two receivers in the history of the NFL—and none of them after the merger—have accrued more rushing yards. He has 683.

    Harvin led the league in YAC/Reception with 8.7 in 2012. He was 7th in 2011, 4th in 2010.

  33. zn0rseman says: Mar 12, 2013 10:32 AM

    I agree with Carter.

    The Vikings got a 1st and 7th round pick, plus a 4th round pick next year for an seldom healthy slot receiver.

    Harvin would have left town next year anyway and is asking for money that is usually reserved only for elite receivers. Plus he only had one season where he was healthy enough to play all 16 games, and he is not a deep threat.

  34. purpleguy says: Mar 12, 2013 10:36 AM

    Certainly not better off on the field.

  35. purpleguy says: Mar 12, 2013 10:36 AM

    Certainly not better off on the field.

  36. qdog112 says: Mar 12, 2013 10:37 AM

    In today’s flag football league that is the NFL, Harvin is gold. He is a do everything typ player. In this one I’ll listen to AP over Mr. “Megatron is not elite” Carter.

    A 25th pick in the 1st rd…? Are you kidding me? SF just fell to 2nd place in the NFC west. They got Bolden, who is the same player as Crabtree. Nobody can get down the field. Get your popcorn.

  37. 6thsense79 says: Mar 12, 2013 10:39 AM

    Love the people in Minnesota trying to now claim Harvin wasn’t really that good. I understand he was a headache and you can claim even if you gave him the money he wanted he wouldn’t be happy. You can even claim he was injury prone. What you can not claim is that he was overrated. I watched the games. Harvin was one of the most explosive talents in the league last year. At times he was the only dependable receiving option on the team.
    All this while the Vikings mysteriously only played him 60% of offensive snaps. He will blossom in Seattle. Say what you want about Carrol he gets the most he can out of unconventional players and he’s not afraid to start them.

  38. vikefan says: Mar 12, 2013 10:40 AM

    vikes are CURRENTLY not better on the field as harvin is one of most dynamic playmakers in NFL but they are much better off off the field as in locker room getting 3 picks for a malcontent that had no intention of showing up anyway.

    GM Spielman did do a heck of a job on this transaction getting as much out of it as he did but his real problem is now just beginning, finding some real talent in wr’s that can make a very average qb look like playoff material hopefully.

  39. purplecrowe says: Mar 12, 2013 10:42 AM

    Agreed…just dont blow it by breaking the bank on Wallace.

    Sign the cheaper, younger B.Gibson, draft DTSylvester Williams (because the Vikes are required to have a DT named Williams…) and CB Trufant in the first, trade up a bit to grab Robert Woods in the second…just a thought…

    Oh yeah, and sign Loadholt! Lets at least keep the running game going.

  40. bert1913 says: Mar 12, 2013 10:54 AM

    the seahawks gave up this years 1st round pick (24th). name a college player in the late 1st round that even comes close to harvin’s talent.

    the seahawks also have at least 9 more picks in the 2013 draft and they do so well with their middle round picks.

  41. sandersmarcus10 says: Mar 12, 2013 11:12 AM

    Doesnt matter about Harvin cause there gonna do something dumb like break the bank for Wallace or Jennings both teams made out cuz the Seahawks didnt see anybody at 24 in the draft near his talent plus even though the Vikes made the playoffs they looked horrible. And when your BEST player says WTF you know there something wrong.

  42. theytukrjobs says: Mar 12, 2013 11:24 AM

    I think the Vikings would be better off, from an X’s and O’s standpoint, by having an elite outside WR as opposed to Percy, who specializes in underneath throws and gadget plays.

    With All Day in the backfield, defenses crowd the line. This congests the area that Harvin is best at exploiting. Vikes are better off with a downfield threat that can take advantage of the sparse defensive attention paid to the back end.

    Harvin would be best on a team with decent downfield passing game. Seattle’s isn’t too bad and Harvin will probably have more impact there.

  43. usher716 says: Mar 12, 2013 11:27 AM

    I would take a run at Cruz, why not? They can afford to give up a first now that they have two.

  44. orivar says: Mar 12, 2013 11:44 AM

    Moss took the attention off of Harvin when he arrived again. The only way I can see Harvin becoming a problem because of Randy Moss, is that his ego inflated due to that fact he was constantly open due to Randy taking all the doubles when he was there.

    “Man I’m always open, I’m better than what they’re paying me. I want more money”

    Something like that.

  45. contraisloosebuthole says: Mar 12, 2013 11:51 AM

    It is a travesty that Carter made the hall of fame. The only thing that motivates Carter these days is glory recognition for an ancient career.

  46. stevent92 says: Mar 12, 2013 11:53 AM

    As a Viking Fan, I love Percy Harvin. And I will not be one of those guys trashing him, or trashing the Seahawks for what they gave up for him. I despise his attitude, and rarely do these situations end well for the player in the long-run, but it is what it is. Seattle gets a very-good player, Vikings get depth & cap-space. Win-Win.

    REALITY – Percy is an elite talent, but he WILL NOT WIN any games for anyone. Percy is a very, very good complimentary player. But most of his routes, even with Bevell calling plays, were within 5 yards of LOS. He is a quasi-running back/slot receiver. Complimentary, but not one you can build an offense around, like an Adrian Peterson, Aaron Rodgers, or Larry Fitzgerald. You do NOT pay Complimentary players $10M+ per year. You just don’t. THAT is where I believe Seattle will lose out in this deal, is the money they have to pay the guy that takes away from what they will have to play guys in the future, like Russell Wilson, Russell Okung, Clemons, Sherman, et al. Harvin will either be released, or they’ll lose others.

    I like Percy, and he is electric when playing within the framework of what other offensive players can do. He’ll be good with Lynch, Rice, Wilson, and Tate. But the $$$ is too much for what he does. That’s all.

  47. whatjusthapped says: Mar 12, 2013 11:59 AM

    I still can’t figure out why the Vikings didn’t ask for Matt Flynn in the trade. If you are going to trade the 2nd best player on your team, at least get an upgrade at another position.

    Without a real stud QB in this year’s draft, the Vikings cannot afford to waste another valuable year in Peterson’s short shelf life with Ponder.

  48. jaydm84 says: Mar 12, 2013 12:15 PM

    This guy is such a clown. He was worried because Percy has the ability to out play him and he has a giant ego. Percy’s stats in the first 8 games were astronomical. People love to exaggerate these off the field issues but to my knowledge he hasn’t missed a game for being arrested and didn’t perform worse because he didn’t like Frazier (or Childress). AP is the only vote of confidence I need, talent recognizes other talent.

  49. 2ruefan says: Mar 12, 2013 12:26 PM

    whatjusthapped …

    So, they get rid of Percy Harvin (Partly because of his being a poor teammate, critical of Ponder) and you think they are going to trade for a different QB?

    You’re inserting your own opinion into the discussion here. The Vikings clearly believe they can win with Ponder (which they have proven) if they surround him with an actual receiver or two (and get rid of the head-case Divas…)

  50. WatchThis says: Mar 12, 2013 12:50 PM

    Not a Vikes fan, but getting rid of the trouble-makers is more beneficial than keeping the talented trouble-maker and letting go of the less-talented team player.

  51. irishphilly87 says: Mar 12, 2013 12:54 PM

    Cris Carter or “CC” as hes known on Mike & Mike is a dope. If he really thinks Calvin Johnson isnt elite than hes still on crack. OUCH.

  52. irishphilly87 says: Mar 12, 2013 12:56 PM

    Jerry Rice, Randy Moss, Michael Irvin, T.O., Fitzgerald, and Calvin Johnson when its all said and done are leaps and bounds beyond Cris Carter. He needs to stop thinking he’s the greatest, but then again Freddie “FredEx” Mitchell thinks hes great and he has 90 career receptions. Wes Welker has that in a down year not a career buddy…..

  53. cbreezy80 says: Mar 12, 2013 1:01 PM

    I totally agree with Cris but don’t get me wrong the guy was a talent! Regardless this guy was a weapon kickoffs, punts, receiver and even outta the backfield! Far from a Brandon Marshall as a receiver & to get what they got for him was a total win! Now they just have to find a proven commodity to replace his production & mike Wallace isn’t the answer!

  54. dallascowboysdishingthereal says: Mar 12, 2013 1:24 PM

    Drafting WR Tavon Austin (WVU) in the first would make the Vikings soon say Percy who? Austin can make plays.

    Pete Carrol has had a man crush on Harvin since he attempted to get him to go to USC out of HS.

  55. purplepriderunsdeep says: Mar 15, 2013 11:23 PM

    You can’t have an important player bringing bad attitude to the team, it’s infectious. And we would have lost Percy Harvin next year in free agency anyway and would have gotten nothing in return. The vikings GM is brilliant. He realized Carroll was desperate to add the missing piece to their team for a superbowl run so he was able to negotiate one heck of a sweet deal by getting three picks with one in this year’s first round! And he knew Mike Wallace and Greg Jennings were available. Bottom line is we lost one great player and gained another great player plus three picks. That equates to more talent on the Vikings team next year. The best move the Vikings ever made was hiring a GM.

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