Percy Harvin

Extra Points: Referees, Harvin, Winston, Buccaneers

The big name stars that change teams garner most of the free agency headlines. But the real free agency that could have the biggest impact on the league is the flock of referees fleeing the field for the broadcast booth, writes Ben Volin of the Boston Globe. Volin points out that a number of high profile referees such as Gene Steratore, Terry McAulay, Ed Hochuli, and Jeff Triplette all won’t be back next season, leaving a void in referee leadership.

Volin writes that it’s “another tough blow for NFL officiating”, and longtime NFL official Mike Pereira adds that he’s “never been involved in a season” where there was so much turnover. A total of nine officials are retiring, including the four crew chiefs mentioned above. Volin points out that it could create headaches for the league having so many new inexperienced officials for the upcoming season with several new rule changes. Another former longtime official told Volin the NFL hasn’t “done a good job of preparing for this turnover.”

Here’s more from the football universe:

  • Retired wide receiver Percy Harvin struggled with migraines and mental health issues that ultimately shortened his career, and now he’s opening up about them. During an interview with Michael McKnight of SI.com. Harvin revealed he had “mental stresses that I can’t even put into words” during his playing days, saying he was often playing games having gotten no sleep in the days before.
  • As the debate over what the Buccaneers should do with Jameis Winston rages on, FloridaFootballInsiders took a look at all of the Bucs’ potential options, including releasing Winston immediately. They think if the team does decide to cut Winston “it will come quickly” and that the “financial hit is not that significant” if they chose to do so.
  • In case you missed it, the XFL will reportedly be much better funded this time around.

Percy Harvin To Retire

Wide receiver Percy Harvin is retiring from the NFL and won’t be coming back this time around, a representative tells Jeremy Fowler of ESPN.com (Twitter link). Harvin previously announced his retirement in April 2016 only to re-sign with the Bills last November.Percy Harvin (vertical)

Shortly after signing with Buffalo, Harvin indicated he’d like to continue playing in 2017, as well. But chronic migraine issues forced the Bills to shut Harvin down after he’d spent less than a month with the club. Harvin, 28, dealt with those same migraine issues throughout his throughout his career, and missed time due to the ailment with the Vikings.

Harvin, a former first-round pick, battled various other injuries throughout his career, but still managed to produce as an effective offensive weapon, especially while playing for Minnesota. His best season came in 2011, when he posted 87 receptions for 967 yards and six touchdowns, while adding another 345 yards and two scores on the ground.

Traded to the Seahawks prior to the 2013 season, Harvin ultimately played in only six contests for Seattle before being dealt once again, this time to the Jets. Harvin struggled through a half-season with Gang Green before finishing his career in Buffalo, where he never truly got off the ground.

PFR wishes Harvin all the best in in his post-NFL career.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Bills Shut Down WR Percy Harvin

The Bills are shutting down Percy Harvin for the year. Harvin’s severe migraine headaches proved to be too much to overcome and he is being placed on the NFI list, the team announced. Percy Harvin (vertical)

Harvin surprised everyone in the football world when he came out of retirement earlier this year to rejoin the Bills. Desperate for a playmaker with Sammy Watkins sidelined, coach Rex Ryan admitted that the move was a bit of a Hail Mary. The Bills’ moderate risk did not pay off. In two games, Harvin caught two passes for six yards.

Harvin, 28, has dealt with chronic migraines throughout his career. Early on with the Vikings, Harvin also missed time with headaches. Later in his career, hip and knee issues became a larger issue for the talented receiver.

It seems likely that Harvin will consider retirement again this offseason. If he walks away from the game again, he probably won’t make a return. To date, Harvin has nearly 5,000 career all-purpose yards. After the 2013 season, he captured a Super Bowl ring with the Seahawks.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Bills’ Percy Harvin Wants To Play In 2017

Seemingly out of nowhere, Percy Harvin returned to the Bills earlier this month, ending his brief retirement. It was the Bills that initiated contact and Harvin decided to play again without much previous consideration. It’s early into Harvin’s comeback, but he already says that he has interest in continuing his career beyond 2016 (Twitter link via Mike Rodak of ESPN.com). Percy Harvin (vertical)

Right now, Harvin says that he feels good and apparently isn’t troubled by his hip injury or any of the other maladies he has suffered over the years. He expects to be “full go” this Sunday against Cincinnati this weekend after taking significant first-team reps today, which means that we are close to getting our first real glimpse of Harvin. He was on the field for 21 snaps on Nov. 7 against the Seahawks, but was only used as a decoy in an attempt to fluster his former team.

The Bills have struggled since their four-game winning streak earlier this year and the hope is that Harvin can inject some new life into the offense. Playing on the prorated portion of a one-year, $1.5MM deal, it’s a low-risk move for Buffalo. If all goes well, it sounds like Harvin will have interest in a new deal this spring.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

La Canfora’s Latest: Trades, Collins, Harvin

Let’s take a look at the latest deluge of notes from CBS Sports scribe Jason La Canfora:

  • La Canfora confirms that the Eagles and 49ers had multiple discussions about a potential trade that would send Torrey Smith to Philadelphia, but the two sides could not agree on compensation. The Eagles would have sent a fifth-round selection back to the Bay Area in exchange for Smith, but the 49ers would not consider anything less than a third-round draft choice. Likewise, the Jets were asking for a “very strong return” for Sheldon Richardson, which some executives believe meant a first-round pick.
  • The Patriots‘ decision to deal Jamie Collins was not about money, per La Canfora, who observes that New England now has only $65.8MM in salary and cash committed to the 2017 payroll, by far the least in the NFL. Indeed, the Pats could have easily paid (or overpaid) for Collins if they really wanted to, but the trade suggests that Collins was simply not in their long-term plans. Some industry sources wonder if the trades of Collins and Chandler Jones suggest that New England is set to splurge in free agency, though it is difficult to imagine the Patriots being big spenders in March. Ian Rapoport of NFL.com confirms that the Pats did not consider Collins to be a part of their future, and that the team was slowly turning him into a part-time player and was concerned about the locker room issues that such a transformation could create (Twitter links).
  • Percy Harvin was not contemplating a return to the league when he was contacted by the Bills, La Canfora reports. Instead, the Florida product was happily retired and was investigating potential business deals. Buffalo senior vice president of football administration Bill Overdorf first raised the potential addition of Harvin several weeks ago, and other Bills executives got on board when the team suffered a second consecutive loss. Harvin is expected to see at least limited action Monday night in Seattle.
  • La Canfora reports that Chiefs brass is fully supportive of head coach Andy Reid‘s decision to keep Alex Smith out of game action this week, despite the fact that Smith remains asymptomatic of a concussion after taking two significant blows to the head last Sunday. Smith was able to lift weights regularly and work out as he normally would this week, and by Tuesday already had been cleared by an independent neurologist. However, Reid adopted a “better safe than sorry” approach that was heralded by team executives and by the NFLPA. Smith is expected to return to full practice tomorrow, which ESPN’s Adam Schefter confirms via Twitter. Justin Houston is also expected to return next week, according to La Canfora.

AFC Notes: Fins, Ben, Bills, Broncos, Erving

The Dolphins have defeated winning teams in each of their past two games and are responding to the Adam Gase-led coaching staff more than their group of leaders last season, Armando Salguero of the Miami Herald writes.

Miami’s roster has been more receptive to coaching from this staff after many resisted instruction from the Joe Philbin– and Dan Campbell-led staffs last season, per Salguero, who adds the team’s highest-paid player has fallen in line more in his second season in south Florida.

During his first, “very few people in the building” liked Ndamukong Suh, writes Salguero, who characterizes the standout defensive tackle as not buying into Philbin or Kevin Coyle in leadership positions. This season, Suh’s been living up to his $19MM-AAV price tag, with 3.5 sacks through seven games, rating as Pro Football Focus’ No. 5 interior defender. The Dolphins remain 3-4, though, with a No. 20-ranked defense. They have an uphill battle if they’re going to contend for a playoff spot in Gase’s first season, even if they’ve created some rare momentum.

Here’s more from the AFC, beginning with a team whose momentum the Dolphins stunted.

  • Fantasy owners of Ben Roethlisberger or the Steelers‘ Big Ben-dependent skill-position contingent will need to stay on top of his status going into Week 9, with Adam Schefter reporting (via Twitter) the Steelers haven’t decided if Roethlisberger or Landry Jones will get the call against the Ravens. The 34-year-old passer is less than three weeks removed from meniscus surgery, and another Roethlisberger absence could sink the Steelers to .500 after they looked like one of the league’s most dangerous teams prior to his injury.
  • The Bills remain confident LeSean McCoy and Percy Harvin will play against the Seahawks on Monday night. However, Marcell Dareus will miss the game due to the groin injury he suffered against the Patriots, the team announced. Dareus has played in just one game for the Bills this season.
  • Harvin’s unretirement will net him $825K for the rest of the season, Tom Pelissero reports (on Twitter). The 28-year-old slot target will also earn $22.5K in game-day roster bonuses. Harvin made $6MM for the Bills last season.
  • In addition to Aqib Talib being set to miss Sunday night’s Broncos-Raiders tilt, Denver dime back Kayvon Webster will be out as well, Nicki Jhabvala of the Denver Post tweets. Functioning as the No. 4 corner for a third straight season, Webster injured his hamstring against the Chargers, leaving the Broncos with three healthy corners on their active roster who have played in a game this season. The defending champions did add Taurean Nixon from their practice squad earlier today.
  • Free to use this year as an observational campaign now that they’re 0-8, the Browns are considering moving Cameron Erving from center to tackle, Nate Ulrich of the Akron Beacon Journal reports. PFF rates Erving as its worst center among the 34 qualifying as full-time snappers. Hue Jackson intends to keep trying the 2015 first-rounder at center but acknowledged a position change could be in the cards, with Ulrich noting tackle would be the move. The 6-foot-6 Erving started at left tackle for two full seasons at Florida State before moving to center during his senior year in 2014. Cleveland obviously has Joe Thomas at left tackle and opted not to trade him again, but Thomas turns 32 this offseason and will continue to see his trade value diminish as he ages. The Browns have Austin Pasztor at right tackle.
  • Although he sees the Jets making a big move this coming offseason regardless of what transpires down the stretch (Twitter link), ESPN.com’s Rich Cimini does not see the team pulling an about-face and rekindling Muhammad Wilkerson trade talks. Cimini agrees with Sheldon Richardson, who categorized himself as the defensive line’s “odd man out” earlier this week.

AFC East Notes: Patriots, Brady, Harvin, Bills

Football is a strange business and Patriots quarterback Tom Brady is aware of how quickly things can change. In the wake of the surprising Jamie Collins trade, Brady was asked if he knows he could be traded at some juncture. “Absolutely. You can’t be around this long and not realize the world will keep spinning,” Brady said (Twitter link via Doug Kyed of NESN). Of course, there’s no reason to expect the Patriots to move on from Brady anytime soon.

Here’s more from the AFC East:

Percy Harvin Unretires, Signs With Bills

How’s this for a surprise? Wide receiver Percy Harvin is coming out of retirement to re-sign with the Bills, according to Adam Schefter of ESPN.com (on Twitter). Agent Greg Barnett has also confirmed the news via social media. Harvin’s deal is worth about $1MM over the season’s remaining eight games, including incentives, according to Ian Rapoport of NFL.com (on Twitter). That comes out to about $1.5MM prorated in a 16-game season. Percy Harvin (vertical)

Harvin joined the Bills on a one-year, $6MM deal in March of 2015, but was unable to stay healthy. Battling through a persistent hip injury, the 28-year-old appeared in just five games, recording 19 catches for 218 yards and a touchdown. Harvin, who has also been plagued by knee issues in the past, returned five kicks as well. This past offseason, he wrestled with the idea of retirement and flip-flopped a couple of times in the spring. In April, he told the Bills that he was done playing football, but he apparently had a change of heart in recent weeks.

If Harvin can stay healthy, he could provide a major boost for a Bills offense that is currently without star Sammy Watkins. It’s also worth noting that Harvin has not been 0n the field in quite some time and it’s not immediately clear if he is in football shape. If Harvin is ready to go immediately, then he’ll get to make his 2016 debut against the Seahawks on Monday night.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Percy Harvin To Retire

Wide receiver Percy Harvin has informed the Bills that he will retire, as Adam Schefter of ESPN.com tweetsPercy Harvin (vertical)

Harvin joined the Bills on a one-year, $6MM deal last March, but was unable to stay healthy during the 2015 season. Battling through a persistent hip injury, the 27-year-old (28 in May) appeared in just five games, recording 19 catches for 218 yards and a touchdown. Harvin, who has also been plagued by knee issues in the past, returned five kicks as well.

While Harvin was unlikely to regain the explosiveness he showed during the early years of his NFL career in Minnesota, there were reportedly teams that still believed he had something left in the tank. Another $6MM salary was unlikely, but Harvin probably could have netted an incentive-laden, one-year deal.

Harvin was traded from the Seahawks to the Jets in the most surprising in-season trade of 2014. However, Harvin failed to have a huge impact in New York thanks to his hip and knee injuries, totaling 29 receptions for 350 yards and a touchdown in his eight games with the Jets. Harvin also averaged just 24.8 yards per kick return, with no TDs. Last offseason, Harvin turned down a lucrative offer from the 49ers to join up with Buffalo.

We here at Pro Football Rumors wish Harvin the best in his retirement.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Percy Harvin Not A Lock To Play In 2016

Last week, Mike Florio of Pro Football Talk cited a source who said wide receiver Percy Harvin would “definitely” continue his playing career in 2016. Now, it seems that’s no longer a lock. Peter Schrager of FOX Sports (Twitter link) hears from sources that it’s “unlikely” Harvin will be playing football next season, despite receiving inquiries from multiple teams in recent weeks.Percy Harvin (vertical)

It’s possible that Harvin’s apparent change of heart stems from a lack of viable offers or opportunities, but when Florio posited that theory to his source, the source explained that Harvin simply has a “habit of waffling and wavering and flat-out changing his mind, over and over again.” As such, it remains to be seen whether the former Vikings, Seahawks, Jets, and Bills receiver will sign a new contract in the coming weeks or months.

Harvin joined the Bills on a one-year, $6MM deal last March, but was unable to stay healthy during the 2015 season. Battling through a persistent hip injury, the 27-year-old (28 in May) appeared in just five games, recording 19 catches for 218 yards and a touchdown. Harvin, who has also been plagued by knee issues in the past, returned five kicks as well.

While Harvin will probably never regain the explosiveness he showed during the early years of his NFL career in Minnesota, there are teams that still believe he has something left in the tank, writes Florio. Another $6MM salary is unlikely, but if Harvin does ultimately decide to sign a contract, there should be clubs willing to gamble on his upside on an incentive-laden, one-year deal.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.