Saturday, April 18, 2015
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sid hartman

Sid Hartman, the oldest member of the Vikings Cheerleading Team, is at it again.

For a guy that normally uses this time of year to boost the morale of fanbase, Hartman has decided to pass along a disheartening piece of information about the Percy Harvin saga, just in time for Sunday morning’s paper.

Hartman says that he has gotten word from “some good sources” in the NFL that the troubled receiver has told the Vikings that he no longer wants to play for them and would like to be traded.  Additionally, Hartman says there is no way that Harvin would be reporting for duty when the Vikings begin offseason workouts on April 22nd, which is not a surprise to anyone that is paying attention.

I have noticed over the years that Hartman seems more than willing to be a pawn in the Vikings public relations efforts, and I can’t help but wonder where Hartman got this information and what motives the “sources” had for leaking it, and I find it interesting that Hartman goes out of his way to point out the leverage the Vikings still have in this situation and give credence to Rick Spielman’s assertions that the team will not be trading Harvin.

One must keep in mind that Spielman and his staff are currently fighting a war on two fronts.  They have to balance between maintaining leverage with Harvin, in case negotiations do eventually take place, and also maintain a good game face to maximize their selling price if it comes down to a trade scenario.  Hartman seems to do a good job of helping Spielman out on both fronts with this latest report.

This could all be over as soon as Tuesday.  It may also last right up until Draft Day in April, or even longer.  In theory, this thing could play out over the course of the next couple of years, but that is sounding less and less likely with every report that comes out.

Short of an actual trade, the Vikings signing one of the top free agent receivers available this offseason would be the surest sign of all that the Vikings are ready to move on and will work hard towards shipping Harvin out of town.  Ironically enough, it could be Harvin’s contract demands that prevent a deal from taking place quickly.

Leslie Frazier wants fans to know that a slow start to this free agency period does not mean the Vikings plan to bow out all together.  In fact, he specifically identifies some positions that the team is still looking to upgrade at.

“We still want to find a wide receiver that can really threaten the field vertically,” Frazier told Sid Hartman. “We also want to improve our secondary along with our linebackers, also.”

“We’re going to look to do that, we’re going to look to upgrade our team,” he continued.  “We may do it through free agency but we’re definitely going to do it through the draft, as well. But, yeah, we’re still looking at some players in free agency. … It’s not closed, we’re still looking.”

Hartman took Frazier through basically the whole roster and Frazier’s answers didn’t exactly reveal much.  The gist is that they want their young guys to step up, they may re-sign some of their own free agents still, they may look to the outside for added help, and they are looking forward to the Draft.

The conservative approach to free agency, however, does not have Frazier writing off this team in 2012.

“Not in our profession. Somebody else will be sitting in this seat if I look to the future,” Frazier said. “I have to get our guys ready to have a good season next year. We need to have a good year.”

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