Matt Vensel is in his first year at the Star Tribune after covering the Ravens for the Baltimore Sun for six years. He is a Pittsburgh native and a Penn State grad. Follow him at @mattvensel.


Mark Craig has covered the NFL for 23 years, and the Vikings since 2003 for the Star Tribune. He is one of 44 Pro Football Hall of Fame selectors. Follow him at @markcraignfl.


Master Tesfatsion is the Star Tribune’s digital Vikings writer. He is a 2013 graduate of Arizona State and worked for mlb.com before arriving in Minneapolis. Follow him at @masterstrib.


Tate: '[Harvin] a guy who can break the game at any point'

Posted by: Mark Craig under Super Bowl Updated: January 28, 2014 - 5:00 AM

NEW YORK -- So how should we view former Vikings receiver/returner/pain-in-management's-backside Percy Harvin and his potential impact on Sunday's Super Bowl XLVIII?

Is he an overpaid, injury-prone superstar who will make a cameo, get hurt and be forgotten as Vikings fans continue to enjoy the three draft picks their team received in return last offseason? Or is he a semi-secret weapon who will perform like an explosive playmaker, using fresh legs and a fierce attitude to elevate Seattle's OK passing attack while being remembered forever in Super Bowl history?

Seahawks teammate and fellow receiver Golden Tate voted for the latter Monday evening when asked what it means for Harvin to return after missing 15 regular-season games and the NFC Championship game.

“I think it's huge," Golden Tate said. "I really admire the way he plays the game. He’s had some tough breaks this year, but at the end of the day he’s had a positive attitude, staying positive. He’s ready to go. I’m excited to have him back on the field. He brings another whole dimension to this offense and to special teams. (He is) just another weapon on this offense, another playmaker (and) another guy who can break the game at any point.

"I feel like on this team, we have playmakers all over the place: (quarterback) Russell (Wilson), myself, “Beast Mode” (running back Marshawn Lynch), (wide receiver) Percy (Harvin) (and tight end) Zach (Miller). On the other side of the ball, you’ve got (strong safety) Cam (Chancellor), (free safety) Earl (Thomas), (cornerback) Richard (Sherman), (cornerback) Byron Maxwell is showing up, (linebacker) Bobby Wagner. We have guys that can make plays all day.”"

Seahawks coach Pete Carroll said Harvin is good to go and will can do everything asked of him. That means Harvin should be returning kickoffs as well as playing receiver. In his only regular-season game in 2013, which, naturally, was against the Vikings, Harvin's 58-yard kickoff return right before halftime was a turning point in a close contest that became a 40-21 Seahawks rout.

Heading over to Super Bowl media day soon. Will have more updates later in the day.

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