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.


Frazier says a happy Harvin 'is big for our entire team'

Posted by: Mark Craig under Vikings, NFC, Packers, Leslie Frazier, Jared Allen, Leslie Frazier, Percy Harvin Updated: September 26, 2012 - 1:24 PM

It's pretty obvious by the way he's playing through three games that Percy Harvin is one extremely happy camper, which is something he admittedly wasn't during mini-camp in June.

Coach Leslie Frazier confirmed Harvin's happiness and how it affects the rest of the team, and not just on game day.

"The way he practices, he practices hard and he doesn't ask to get out of reps," Frazier said. "He's great in the meetings. He's been a very good teammate. We need that. When you got so many young guys who are learning how to play in our league, to have a star player like him stepping up and beeing attentive and taking notes and showing guys the way. And then going on the field and playing the way he's playing, it's big for our entire team."

That's quite the 180 since June, when Harvin skipped a mandatory mini-camp workout and asked for a trade.

Quarterback Christian Ponder was asked about Harvin's happiness. Ponder smiled and said, "I'd be happy if I was getting the ball as much as he is."

Harvin has an NFL-high 27 receptions.

Other highlights from Frazier today:

  • Tight end Kyle Rudolph (thigh) won't practice. Defensive end Jared Allen (neck) will be limited.
  • Linebacker Erin Henderson, who suffered a concussion in Week 2 at Indianapolis, still hasn't passed his league-mandated concussion tests. He can't return to the field until he does.
  • Safety Mistral Raymond saw a specialist for his ankle injury. He doesn't need surgery and is expected to miss three to five weeks, Frazier said.
  • Frazier on the news that the NFL and its officials were close to an agreement that would replace the replacement officials with the regular refs: "I would imagine it will be well received. We just have to wait to see if that comes to fruition." As for whether he was surprised by the national uproar over the end of the Packers-Seahawks game on Monday night, Frazier said: "Without question, our sport is the No. 1 sport in America. So there are a lot of people who follow our game. So not completely surprised. A lot of people love professional football. It's a big deal in our country."
  • Frazier on how much he intends to use receiver Jerome Simpson -- who returns from his three-game suspension -- this week: "Quite a bit. We definitely want to get him invovled."
  • Receiver Jarius Wright was very close to being healthy enough to play against the 49ers, but the Vikings wanted to give his ankle anohter week just to be sure. Barring a setback, Wright's health shouldn't prevent him from being active this week. His ability to contribute might be an issue, though.
  • Asked about his team's 11-game losing streak within the NFC North -- Frazier is 0-8 in the division as head coach -- Frazier talked about how important a win on Sunday is and then said, "2012. It's a new year."  
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