NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — Percy Harvin is ready to get to work with quarterback Geno Smith and the Jets.
The wide receiver met the media after practice Monday, saying he feels “welcome” in New York after a series of reported missteps with the Super Bowl champion Seattle Seahawks.
“Everything is good,” he said. “They have pieces here — I’m loving Geno. I’m loving the defense. I’m looking forward to playing alongside (Eric) Decker.”
Harvin came away with a good impression of his new head coach, Rex Ryan: “I love him. Love him, love him.”
Hardly the words of a locker-room malcontent. But Harvin has been plagued by questions about his makeup, especially since last week’s stunning trade from the Seahawks, who got only a conditional draft pick in return. Seattle acquired Harvin from the Minnesota Vikings in March 2013 for first-, third- and seventh-round selections.
“I’m definitely not a perfect person,” said Harvin, denying reports of refusing to enter his last game for the Seahawks. “I have a lot of things I wish I would have done a little differently. I’m moving forward. I’m learning from those lessons.”
“Judge me off of what you see,” he added.
The 26-year-old has been accused of fighting former teammates Golden Tate and Doug Baldwin. Offensive lineman Breno Giacomini, who played with Harvin in Seattle last season, said the incidents have been over-hyped “for no reason.”
“Almost everybody in this locker room has been in a fight before,” Giacomini said. “We play football, you know what I’m saying? Oh, it happened twice? Who cares? He’s a good competitor. That’s what it is. I know it was squashed right away with Golden because I was there, and I heard the same thing about Doug. I think it’s being blown up.”
Ryan also defended his new playmaker.
“Nobody is perfect,” Ryan said. “That’s the one thing I know for a fact that Percy has in common with every single person in this building, including everybody in here.”
Harvin will be expected to “act like a Jet,” said general manager John Idzik, adding the trade “could be a potential coup” for the franchise. But being a model citizen won’t be enough. The former first-round pick will have to produce — ASAP — with the Jets in free-fall at 1-6.
“Obviously he’s a tremendous player,” said Smith, who has nine games to prove himself with two legitimate weapons in Harvin and Decker. “I will get to know him as a person, but we see the things he’s done on the field and we appreciate having him here. I think it’s really going to help everyone on this team and really boost everyone up on the offense and make us all better.”
Fans will get their first look at the connection Sunday against the Buffalo Bills.
“It’s definitely a place I want to be for a long time,” Harvin said. “I’m here, I’m glad I’m here and I’m going to make the most of the opportunity.”
Harvin has 22 catches for 133 yards on the season.
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