NEWARK, N.J. — Barring an injury setback, Seattle receiver Percy Harvin will finally play a full game Sunday … in the Super Bowl against Denver, no less.
“It was definitely a trying year,” he said. “It was frustrating for a lot of people — me, my teammates and the front office — but we all stuck together.”
Stuck together though the hip injury that required surgery and cost him all but one regular-season game and stuck together through the concussion he sustained in the playoff win over New Orleans on Jan. 11 that caused him to miss the NFC title game.
Harvin, acquired from Minnesota last March for two first-round picks (last year and this year) and a seventh-round pick (last year), was cleared before the Seahawks traveled to the East Coast and intends to be at full strength against Denver.
“I’ve had good practices, and I have full confidence in my game,” he said. “Once I’m out there, I only know one speed, and that’s full force.”
Harvin’s first 55 NFL games (over five years) have produced 281 catches for 3,319 yards and 20 touchdowns. He was often a tour de force. He’s a speedy playmaker who can flourish in a variety of ways.
But his lost season has put him in a weird conversation, one of an X factor.
“I’ve been hearing that talk,” Harvin said. “It’s good to know people view me as a weapon like that. But I just want to be a normal guy on a team that has a lot of weapons and is led by a great quarterback and a great coach.”
NO LEGACY TALK
Besides being asked about the weather, the most popular topic Broncos quarterback Peyton Manning has faced this week is his future.
When Denver faces Seattle on Sunday, Manning will appear in his third Super Bowl.
The Colts beat Chicago in February 2007 and lost to New Orleans in February 2010.
“I’ve been asked about my legacy since I was 25 years old — I’m not sure if you can have a legacy when you’re 25 or even 37,” Manning said. “I thought you had to be 70 to have a legacy. I’m down the homestretch of my career, but I’m still in it. It’s still playing out. This has been the second chapter of my career and it’s an exciting chapter.”
Manning is trying to become the first quarterback to win a Super Bowl with two different teams.
John Elway played in five Super Bowls for Denver (winning two) and had a 148-82-1 record as a starter. Now in his third year running the Broncos’ football operations, he is only now beginning to find a happy medium while watching the game from upstairs.
“I’m getting better with letting the control go and knowing there’s nothing I can do,” No. 7 said. “The San Diego [playoff] game, for me, was a crucial game for us so I was more nervous for that game than I had been since I took the job because of the impact I knew it would have on us as an organization. And had we lost, the impact it would have had. The impact of each game determines how nervous I get.”
Elway was hired by owner Pat Bowlen in January 2011, and his biggest moves were hiring coach John Fox later that month and, in March 2012, signing Manning.
“When you’ve got a guy who has played the game and has won championships and who knows what it takes, that sets the bar,” receiver Eric Decker said. “He’s been amazing leader for us from the standpoint of being around and having conversations.”
Harvin was undoubtedly speaking for, well, everybody when he said of the weather: “We’re definitely tired of talking about it.”
Ryan O’Halloran: (904) 359-4401