Darrius Heyward-Bey and Hakeem Nicks weren’t the only wide receivers who caught the attention of the Tennessee Titans this weekend at the NFL Combine.
Also interviewed was the dynamic Percy Harvin, one of the key players on last year’s National Champion Florida Gators. Unlike other receivers, Harvin is a dual-threat, a guy who can beat you catching the football as well as wreaking havoc via his rushing abilities.
Should Percy be in the running as an option for the Titans at pick #30?
On Sunday, the Titans’ brass and representatives from many other NFL teams watched Harvin trot to a 4.41 time in the forty-yard dash. While his time wasn’t quite as fast as Heyward-Bey’s jaw-dropping 4.3, Harvin’s wheels probably solidified his standing as a potential late first-round selection in this April’s draft.
Harvin isn’t your typical top WR prospect. He isn’t a guy who caught a ton of passes in college (only 40 in 2008). He also lacks the size (5’11”) that’s usually associated with the prototypical NFL receiver.
Despite his less than stellar measurables, Harvin is a playmaking demon. He scored 17 touchdowns during his final year in Gainesville, with 10 of those coming on the ground and 7 via the air. Harvin’s also pretty popular on Youtube, as a result of his scintillating combination of quickness and moves that has inspired many to refer to him as “Reggie Bush at the WR position.”
Selecting Harvin would provide the presence of another playmaker on a Tennessee Titan offense that lacks a wide receiver who can take it the distance on any given play.
Can you imagine the nightmares that opposing defensive coordinators would have if they were forced to try to stop a offense that featured Harvin and Chris Johnson? Mike Heimerdinger would be one lucky man, to say the least.
In addition to injury concerns, this is my other drawback with Harvin: Can he function as a wide receiver on the NFL level? Instead of operating out of the gimmicky formations that he grew accustomed to at Florida, Harvin will have to demonstrate that he can run good routes in a pro-style offense.
Sure, as a jack-of-all-trades, Percy is a force to be reckoned with but will he be able to get it done in the NFL while lining up as a traditional wideout?
Harvin and CJ together on the same offense is an intriguing thought, but color me pessimistic about the prospects of this pipedream turning into reality on draft day.