The Seattle Seahawks will face the San Francisco 49ers for the NFC championship Sunday afternoon without one of their most talented offensive weapons in receiver Percy Harvin, who was ruled out due to the concussion he suffered against the New Orleans Saints in the divisional round. Harvin, acquired from the Minnesota Vikings for Seattle's first-round pick in 2013, missed all but 20 snaps of the regular season with a hip injury and played just 19 snaps against the Saints before he had to leave the game following two hard hits.
“He’s still going through the process -- the protocols as we call it -- and we don’t know," head coach Pete Carroll said of Harvin's status on Thursday. "We don’t know anything yet.”
They know now, and it's been announced. Harvin managed to get back in the game after an early collision with Saints safety Rafael Bush had him looking woozy. However, an incomplete pass from Wilson in the second quarter led to a smackdown from Saints safety Malcolm Jenkins, and Harvin’s day was officially done.
“The poor kid,” Carroll said. “He finally gets to play, and he banged his head against the turf real hard. He was OK the first time, but the second one really rocked him. He was battling, did a good job and gave us a little spark.”
The Seahawks, who signed Harvin to a six-year, $67 million contract with $25.5 million guaranteed after the trade, hoped Harvin would put them over the top with his speed and athleticism. But the hip injury, suffered at the start of the team's training camp, stole that opportunity with the exception of the Saints game and a few plays against the Vikings on Nov. 17. In that game, Harvin caught one pass for 17 yards and returned a kick for 58 yards, proving that when he is healthy, Harvin is one of the most explosive athletes in the NFL.
Sadly for the Seahawks, "when he is healthy" has proven to be a rather stern qualifier.