The Seattle Seahawks shocked the NFL world when they traded wide receiver Percy Harvin to the New York Jets for a conditional draft pick on Friday night.
The Seahawks paid a small fortune — three drafts picks and $US19 million in salary — to bring Harvin to Seattle in 2013. What they got from the Jets, reportedly a sixth-round pick that can potentially become a fourth-round pick, doesn’t come close to that.
While Harvin’s sizable contract was initially cited as the reason Seattle dumped him, it’s now clear that the relationship between Harvin and the team behind the scenes had become toxic. In the aftermath of the trade, a bunch of stories about Harvin’s clashes are leaking out and they’re ugly.
On Sunday, Michael Robinson, who played on last year’s Seahawks team and now works for the NFL Network, confirmed a widely reported story about a fight between Percy Harvin and Golden Tate before the Super Bowl.
The story first leaked on Friday. According to Mike Florio of ProFootballTalk, Harvin body-slammed Tate so hard at the team hotel that some people thought he broke his neck.
Robinson says the fight between Harvin and Tate happened the night before the Super Bowl, and he broke it up.
Robinson told the NFL Network:
“Something did go on at the Super Bowl that a lot of fans don’t know about. There was an altercation in the locker room between Percy Harvin and Golden Tate. … There was an issue. I physically broke it up, and I was there. You’d have to ask those guys what they were arguing about.”
After a the story leaked, photos of Tate looking like he had a black eye during Super Bowl week began to circulate.
Seattle radio personality Lance Zierlein later reported that Harvin and quarterback Russell Wilson got into an argument this year after Wilson called him out for having a “bad attitude.”
“In the coming days, specific details undoubtedly will emerge regarding Harvin’s lack of chemistry in the locker room. As one source explained it to PFT on Friday evening, the Seahawks possibly feared that Harvin had sufficient influence over enough of the locker room to launch a mutiny against quarterback Russell Wilson, who despite not yet getting a franchise-quarterback contract possibly has become the target of some resentment among players who don’t share his complete devotion to the game, and who regard the third-year quarterback as a player-coach.”
According to Jay Glazer of Fox, Harvin pulled himself out of two different games this year, most recently against the team’s loss to Dallas.
Things got so bad that the team was going to cut Harvin if they couldn’t find a trade partner, ESPN’s Chris Mortensen reports.
Even if you assume all these stories are coming out now (in great volume and detail) in an effort to make the Seahawks look justified in trading one of their best players for nothing, it’s clear that there was a very real rift between Harvin and the team.
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