Percy Harvin eager to establish fresh start with Bills
PITTSFORD, N.Y. (AP) Bills receiver Percy Harvin is at peace with his checkered past, and wants more than anything to put it behind him.
Whatever divisive reputation the talented yet troubled player established during his first six NFL seasons, it's not something Harvin wants accompanying him to Buffalo, his fourth stop in as many years.
''I know the person I am and the person I'm going to become,'' Harvin said Saturday. ''I've learned from all my lessons. And I'm just going to keep growing as a person, as a teammate, as a son, as a future husband.''
At 27, Harvin's looking only forward.
He hints there might be a wedding engagement in his near future - ''It's heading that way,'' Harvin said, breaking into a smile.
On the field, Harvin is taking a team-first approach in a bid to dispute the label Sports Illustrated recently applied by referring to him as the NFL's ''most-hated player in the locker room.''
He's open to accepting any role the Bills offer: receiving and returning kickoffs. And Harvin will even propose one more: Cornerback.
It's a position Harvin took a few snaps at on Friday, when the Bills opened camp.
''I definitely feel like I can run with anybody in the league,'' Harvin said. ''I've got good footwork. Great hips. It's something I've always wanted to do and always kept in my tool bag.''
Coach Rex Ryan was intrigued enough to give Harvin's proposal a shot.
''This is just a `Let's see what he can do,''' Ryan said. ''But obviously, he's got the physical skillset that you would think he'd probably be pretty good at it.''
Veteran safety Corey Graham was left impressed.
''Man, that's sweet,'' he said. ''It shocked me. You never see anybody of that caliber who's willing to do that. So it means a lot.''
Without prompting, Graham then took issue with Harvin's critics.
''Everybody always talks bad about Percy,'' he said. ''I don't see it at all. He's a great team player. And he's willing to do whatever it takes.''
Harvin is in Buffalo, where he's running out of second chances during what's been a mercurial career.
It began in 2009 when the Vikings' first-round draft pick was named the NFL's Offensive Rookie of the Year after scoring eight touchdowns - six receiving and two returning kickoffs.
The low point came midway through last season. Scuffles with then-Seahawks teammates Doug Baldwin and Golden Tate led Seattle to abruptly trade Harvin to the New York Jets for a conditional draft pick.
In March, Harvin signed a three-year contract - though only the first season is guaranteed - with Buffalo, where he is reunited with Ryan after the two developed a close bond in New York.
Signing with Buffalo was what Harvin called ''a no-brainer.''
Now it's on him to re-establish himself after injuries and distractions limited him to just 52 catches for 500 yards and one touchdown and another TD rushing over the past two seasons.
''Me and Rex Ryan, we fell in love with each other,'' Harvin had said in April. ''When I came here, they were excited to have me here. So I don't look at the past. I only look to the future. And the world has yet to see me really explode like I'm about to.''
Harvin didn't back down when reminded of those comments Saturday.
''I just know what I'm capable of,'' he said. ''It's not something I haven't done before. I just want to do that consistently and just be a better son, a better brother and just overall a better person.''
''Actually,'' Harvin added, ''I like the way I'm heading. And I'm going to keep heading in that direction.''
NOTES: Ryan said the Bills are working with the NFL to determine Aaron Kromer's status after prosecutors in Florida on Friday dropped a battery charge against Buffalo's offensive line coach for allegedly punching a boy in the face last month. Kromer, who is on paid leave, is expected to rejoin the Bills next week, but faces potential disciplinary action, including a suspension or fine. ... Ryan revealed the Bills are keeping CB Leodis McKelvin off his feet as a result of an undisclosed injury that has the starter on the Active/Non-Football Injury list. McKelvin was spotted sitting in a golf cart watching practice. ... The Bills claimed OT Terren Jones off waivers, a day after being released by Tennessee. He's listed at 6-foot-7 and 341 pounds, and played one game for the Titans last season.
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