You can bet as soon as the Seattle Seahawks brokered the trade with Minnesota that sent Percy Harvin to Seattle, offensive coordinator Darrell Bevell was in his office watching old Vikings game film trying to figure out innovative ways to get his new toy the ball.
Well, two can play that game. So let’s take a look at some of the different ways the Seahawks can make sure Harvin gets at least eight to 10 touches a game come September.
Yeah, I know some people hate this play. But it’s a pretty easy way to get a receiver in space to create a chunk play, and you can run it out of several different formations.
With Harvin as the slot receiver, the Seahawks can put defenses in a bind. Spread the field to cover Harvin on the outside, and Russell Wilson hands it to Marshawn Lynch. Stack the box, and with a quick flick of the wrist Wilson has the ball in a playmaker’s hands out on the perimeter.
Harvin has the speed to threaten safeties down the middle of the field, but also is nifty enough to create separation from the linebackers in underneath coverage, and make something happen after the catch, which Minnesota offensive coordinator Bill Musgrave discusses in the video below.
If you’re a defensive end on the back side of the zone read option, you better stay home or Harvin will beat you with speed around the edge on the reverse.
It’s a pretty simple route run at all levels of football. Basically you run all your receivers vertically up the field, and take the outside receiver and run him on a shallow crossing route at about five yards across the field. Ideally, the defense is in man coverage and for someone like Harvin, that means nothing but green grass with a defensive back trailing him when he clears the offensive tackle on the other side of the field. If the defense is playing zone, the receiver is taught to gear down and find an open window in the underneath coverage. The play is about 45 seconds in. This video also provides a decent look at how Bevell used Harvin in his rookie season with Bret Favre on the team.
KICK RETURN GAME
Looking to spice up the return game? Harvin has five kickoff returns for touchdowns since entering the league in 2009, the most of any player during that period. Seattle’s doesn’t have to use him back there every time, but the Seahawks can pick their spots and put Harvin back there when they need a big return.
How about Lynch AND Harvin in the backfield at the same time? Expect Bevell to take a look at some old University of Florida tape, where Harvin excelled as a running back and a receiver in a read option attack. Check out this counter play out of the shotgun from Harvin’s days at Florida in the video below. Ridiculous.