John Idzik addressed the media today on the Percy Harvin trade. Here are some of the key points.
Idzik said #Jets did "a ton of background" on Percy Harvin. "I thought it was prudent to move forward (with the trade)."— Kimberley A. Martin (@KMart_LI) October 20, 2014
Idzik said bringing in "a person like Percy" will help the offense. Called him "explosive." #jets— Kimberley A. Martin (@KMart_LI) October 20, 2014
#Jets GM John Idzik has no concerns about Percy Harvin's character, says it could be "a potential coup" for NY— Dennis Waszak Jr. (@DWAZ73) October 20, 2014
Idzik says he and Seahawks GM John Schneider had very "candid" and thorough conversations about Harvin— Dennis Waszak Jr. (@DWAZ73) October 20, 2014
Idzik: "We're confident in Percy being a real contributor to the #Jets"— Dennis Waszak Jr. (@DWAZ73) October 20, 2014
Idzik said the Jets started having substantive talks with Seahawks last week #nyj— Manish Mehta (@MMehtaNYDN) October 20, 2014
Idzik says he's confident Harvin will behave himself. Said he talked to lots of folks in Seattle about Harvin's issues there #nyj— Brian Costello (@BrianCoz) October 20, 2014
Idzik on trading for Harvin at 1-6: "I don't think it's too late." #nyj— Manish Mehta (@MMehtaNYDN) October 20, 2014
John Idzik: "We’re developing as an offense. We’re developing around Geno. Geno is too. So Percy will help in that regard." #nyj— Manish Mehta (@MMehtaNYDN) October 20, 2014
John Idzik said that the team has a standard of behavior for "acting like a Jet." #nyj— Manish Mehta (@MMehtaNYDN) October 20, 2014
Does John Idzik worry about Harvin being a disruptive force? "Right now, no." #nyj— Manish Mehta (@MMehtaNYDN) October 20, 2014
Idzik: "You really don’t know until he gets immersed into the Jets culture, but we have a very positive outlook for Percy Harvin" #nyj— Manish Mehta (@MMehtaNYDN) October 20, 2014
Idzik on whether trade a reaction to public pressure/criticism: "Pure + simple, this move, like any move, it's a move to improve the Jets."— Rich Cimini (@RichCimini) October 20, 2014
Jets GM John Idzik: "We have a real healthy environment for Percy Harvin." #nyj— Manish Mehta (@MMehtaNYDN) October 20, 2014
RE: Percy, #Jets GM John Idzik said Florida, Minny + SEA are all "different environments than here in New York."— Kimberley A. Martin (@KMart_LI) October 20, 2014
Idzik: "We feel like we have a very healthy environment 4 players + that’s a tribute to the character that we have in our locker rm." #jets— Kimberley A. Martin (@KMart_LI) October 20, 2014
Geno called Percy Harvin "a dynamic player." Added: "To have a guy like that...it'll make us all better." #jets— Kimberley A. Martin (@KMart_LI) October 20, 2014
Based on what I've heard from a number of places, I'm pretty confident in saying there were serious issues with Harvin in Seattle. I'm not really sure it would be possible to find a place less stable currently than the Jets. That's how things are when a team is out of the Playoff hunt before the World Series starts, and everybody knows the coach is probably going to get fired.
This doesn't mean the experiment is necessarily doomed from the outset, though. Some players take to certain groups of people no matter how things appear on the outside. It's entirely possible Harvin will take to the Jets culture.
Ultimately this is a high reward situation. On paper Harvin's skillset meshes perfectly with a lot of things the Jets need. He could potentially change the offense.
Is this the low risk situation people are portraying it to be? It is not. Think of it this way. No matter how much cap space you have, $6.5 million is an awful lot to spend on 9 meaningless games. Because that money is tied up, it's a good player you now cannot sign or perhaps a few role players. You really can't throw that away in anything other than an extreme failure so this is probably going to last through 2015 at least. That means the Jets are likely sinking $17 million and a fourth round pick into Percy over the next year and a half. This is a hefty investment. Maybe they'll renegotiate the deal to bring the number down. Maybe they won't. To give Percy an incentive, that might mean actually guaranteeing money in future years so $17 million is going to end up being in the ballpark no matter what happens.
Now it's true the Jets can walk away from Percy at any time without any additional dead money going against the cap. This is a good thing, and it does lessen the risk. But this fact alone does not make it a no risk deal. The Jets are parting with substantial resources. If this thing works out, great. If not, it will hurt. It's probably moderate risk, high reward.
Given what we know and the skills Harvin can bring to the table, I tend to think this is a risk worth taking. I still have this sinking feeling that had the Jets played their cards smarter in the offseason they might be in the AFC East mix right now, and we're talking about Harvin as the final piece to make this team a legitimate championship contender. Alas.