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Photo: Aj Mansour (KFAN)
By: Aj Mansour | KFAN.com
Eden Prairie, MN - Clouded by the off the field situation with Chad Greenway's family and the recovery of Adrian Peterson from ACL surgery was Percy Harvin's mysterious disappearance from OTAs. Harvin, who was admittedly still recovering from shoulder surgery, showed up for the first open media day of Vikings OTAs three weeks ago but was not scene or heard from during the rest of the optional camp. Now that mandatory mini camps have kicked off, Percy was in attendance and the conversation that he had with reporters after morning walkthroughs left questions surrounding the real reason why Harvin was missing from OTAs and might be missing from Training Camp at the end of July.
"I'm just not happy," Harvin shared. "I won't go into how unhappy. I'm just overall not happy with a couple of situations."
During the extent of the three minute conversation, Harvin was continuously peppered with carefully worded questions trying to gleam a little more insight into the issue. But Percy stuck to his guns and kept his reasons for unhappiness to himself.
"We're kind of keeping everything in house," Percy did say. "If specific people (Coach Frazier) choose to tell you the stories, then they do. I keep everything in house and we deal with things in house. So, that's the way I keep it."
Only saying that there are "a lot of different things that have to be sorted out," Percy did mention that if things were not able to be "sorted out," he would be absent from the beginning of the team's Training Camp in Mankato.
Stepping up to the podium for his turn to face the press, Coach Frazier did not appear to be too worried about the situation surrounding Percy and his unhappiness.
"There's some things he and I will talk through and we'll get those resolved," Frazier said. "I don't see any reason why he wouldn't be at Training Camp."
Harvin, who is heading into his fourth season as a pro, is coming off of his best season with the Minnesota Vikings. Reeling in 87 receptions for 967 yards and 9 total touchdowns, Harvin is now the #1 receiver on this team. Common speculation surrounding the situation is that Harvin is upset with his contract and is "politely" asking for a new extension before the 2012 season.
Entering the fourth year of his five-year rookie contract, Percy is slated to make $915,000 this year. Not bad money to you and I, but to a guy who views himself as the team's number one receiving option, that's chump change.
It's tough to tell where leverage lies within the current state of the situation as both sides seem to have leverage.
Harvin is right in his assumption that he is the Vikings best receiving option and having taken on an extended role as a running back in 2011, his value to the team has increased exponentially. His numbers have improved each season and with a young quarterback in Christian Ponder, the Vikings will want to put as many weapons on the field as they can.
On the other end of things, Harvin is still under contract for two more seasons. Teams don't often grant forced extensions to players with more than one year remaining on their deal. Add to that the fact that Percy, a small receiver who finds himself in the flats quite often, has been plagued with injuries throughout his entire pro career, and the Vikings may not be anxious to throw a huge investment at Harvin quite yet.
With both of these cases laid out plain as day, it was interesting to hear little to no concern in the voice of Leslie Frazier when he spoke of the issue this afternoon. Again, Frazier said that he was not alarmed by the concerns that had surface, he thought that he and Percy could sit down and talk through the problems and that he did not expect Harvin to miss training camp. That's interesting fodder for a situation where both sides are seemingly pretty far apart?
Whatever the problem may truly be, Percy is present for this week's mandatory mini camps and is taking part in activities on a limited basis. With little more to go on at the moment, we'll have to sit back and wait a little longer to see what truly comes out of Percy's current state of unhappiness.
Aj Mansour covers Minnesota Sports for KFAN.com. Feel free to leave comments and questions regarding this post in the space provided below. For Vikings' updates and breaking Vikings' news, follow Aj on Twitter. @AjMansourKFAN