We’ve all heard the rumors that Vikings wide receiver Percy Harvin was slightly less “chill” than usual last week regarding his contract and future with the team. But Harvin and GM Rick Spielman have dodged further prodding since talk of the Pro-Bowler’s trade request surfaced. So what’s on your mind, Percy?
The tight-lipped stance exhibited by members of the organization has caused reporters and fans to speculate. Was he looking to make a few amendments to the final two years of his $12 million rookie contract? Was he not satiated last year by his 967-yard slice in the Vikings’ 28th-ranked air-attack pie? Could he have experienced a prophetic dream in which the Vikings post another 3-13 record in 2012—or worse?
I guess we’ll never know. Despite missing practice last Wednesday, Harvin returned to the field Thursday for the team’s second of three mini-camp practices—the same jovial Percy to which we’ve all grown accustomed.
Based on the recent calm, it’s certainly possible that Spielman has already promised to solve this conundrum with his checkbook, but who doesn’t love a good conspiracy? So here are my three best guesses as to why Harvin’s undies were in a bundle:
3. Adrian Peterson’s fumbleitis has not been fully eradicated. After thrice hacking up leathery phlegm in the Vikings’ overtime loss to the Saints in the 2010 NFC Championship Game, A.P. went on to lose only one greasy watermelon in each of the next two seasons. While a heavy dosage of cough drops appears to have quelled Peterson’s symptoms, the bug remains dormant and wildly contagious. Now, until recently, medical professionals have known fumble fever to be spread exclusively through mouth-to-mouth contact—which has caused many fans to question the piety of Jets quarterback Tim Tebow, whose seven fumbles last year in Denver knighted him “the slickest hands in the West”… and the rest of the NFL.
The pandemic has led Harvin to wonder: Which Viking is next to catch French-fry finger syndrome? Harvin’s best bet is to flee as far as humanly possible from the Midwest, and he’s got his sights set on sunny Jacksonville. But there’s one truth Harvin’s Gator-chomping collegiate quarterback neglected to share with him: A drug-resistant strain of the virus has found an optimal reproduction environment in the popcorn machines of Jacksonville movie theaters—especially those showing flicks rated PG-13 and above. And all this time we’ve been the ones mocking home-schoolers… look who’s laughing now?
2. Harvin finally realized his quarterback is a nerd. And it’s no wonder—when the Vikings took Christian Ponder with the 12th pick in the 2011 draft, even Gheorghe Muresan was in awe of that reach. Remember, at the time, the Vikings were just an even-keeled signal-caller away from a ring. Sure, the guy graduated from Florida State in 2.5 years and picked up an MBA before hearing his final war chant, but this is the same dude who boasted a passer rating of 70.1 in 2011, good for 31st in the NFL. Look, I’m sure Ponder is a sharp guy, but he’s just not a game-changer—the only thing separating him from Screech on Saved by the Bell is a pocket-protector… or five. And if you had to catch passes from a guy who wasn’t even the first pick at the 2012 Comic-Con flag football game, wouldn’t you want out, too?
1. Jared Allen duct-taped a mullet wig onto the back of Harvin’s sleep apnea mask. Ever since Harvin’s mid-practice collapse in August, 2010 and ensuing slumber ailment diagnosis, team prankster Jared Allen has not been short on material. Although Allen’s lighthearted hoax was meant in good fun, the joke took Harvin’s breath away. A die-hard Lionel Richie fan, Harvin interpreted the trick as the last straw in a string of heinous assaults on the ex-Commodore’s unforgettable Jehri curl. To make matters worse, Allen busted Harvin camping out in line at a local Best Buy for the March 26 midnight release of Richie’s country duet album Tuskegee—a record that Allen found to be a groin-shot aimed directly at his Dallas roots. But the day Allen overheard Harvin’s iPod blaring Richie’s classic duet “Endless Love” in the locker room before kickoff, inventing clever insults became truly… well… easy.