Percy Harvin gave drought-starved NFL armchair general managers a splash of rain on Wednesday morning, announcing to the world that he would like the Minnesota Vikings to trade him. Questions from fans and trade scenarios flooded Twitter, but it was probably all just a fever dream of possibility. Adam Schefter of ESPN and others have noted that the Vikings are unlikely to deal the disgruntled receiver, even as they face the potential for a lengthy holdout.
Schefter points out that Harvin's request is not an uncommon one for players seeking some leverage in contract dealings. The 2009 Offensive Rookie of the Year leads a Vikings depth chart filled with mostly question marks and inexperience at wide receiver, not to mention a pressing need to develop quarterback Christian Ponder, last year's first-round pick. Harvin has some leverage given the situation.
The Vikings are said to be wary of paying the receiver anything beyond his current contract and potential bonuses. According to Tom Pelissero of ESPN 1500 in Minnesota, the team is concerned with Harvin's injury history and how it could impact his future career. On top of that, the team has concerns about his off-field issues and previous run-ins with the former coaching staff there, most famously former head coach Brad Childress.
So how does Harvin's disenchantment reconcile with the Vikings tentativeness for a new deal?
Trading Harvin for draft picks in 2013 would do nothing for the Vikings in 2012. He is eligible to bump his 2013 base salary beyond $3.3 million, well above the currently scheduled $1.55 million, based on incentives this season. They have some backup options after drafting a pair of receivers, including slot receiver Jarius Wright, and signing Jerome Simpson as a free agent (though he's suspended for the first three games of the year). None measure up to Harvin's current value, but could be enough to withstand a short holdout.
Harvin's best chance of getting traded after the season or getting the kind of contract extension he wants means playing in 2012, and the Vikings know that.
For more on the Vikings and Harvin, check out Daily Norseman.