Much like in the regular season, Percy Harvin’s return to action for the NFL playoffs was filled with promise, featured hints of athletic brilliance and was later sidetracked by an injury.
The talented Harvin missed all but one game of the regular season because of hip surgery and the lingering recovery. After missing the last five games because of discomfort in the hip, he was back on the field for the Seahawks on Saturday, hoping to provide a boost to a sputtering passing attack in need of another playmaker.
For about two quarters in Seattle’s 23-15 win over the Saints at CenturyLink Field, he provided that presence. But with 1:28 left in the first half, Harvin’s game ended prematurely.
Harvin attempted a leaping catch in the end zone and landed awkwardly while taking a hit from Saints safety Malcolm Jenkins.
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When the second half began, he didn’t accompany his teammates back on the field. His day was done with a concussion.
“That poor kid,” coach Pete Carroll said. “He finally gets to play and he banged his head against the turf really hard.”
It was the second time Harvin was tested for a concussion in the game. On the Seahawks’ first drive of the game, Harvin took a nasty hit from safety Rafael Bush. The hit earned Bush a 15-yard penalty for unnecessary roughness for targeting Harvin’s head. Trainers helped Harvin to the sideline and then to the locker room, where he was tested for a concussion. He passed that first test and returned in the second quarter.
It leaves Harvin’s availability for Sunday’s NFC Championship Game in doubt.
Harvin must meet NFL mandated concussion protocols this week and then practice to be cleared. He will be re-evaluated on Sunday.
Carroll and offensive line coach Tom Cable decided to move rookie Michael Bowie into the starting left guard spot in place of James Carpenter for Saturday’s game. It was a bold move considering Bowie had never started an NFL game at left guard or any spot on the left side of the offensive line. Of Bowie’s eight starts this season, seven came at right tackle and one at right guard.
Carroll told Bowie he’d be starting on Monday.
Tickets for the NFC Championship Game will go on sale at 10 a.m. Monday. Tickets will be available to fans with a billing address in Washington, Oregon, Montana, Idaho, Alaska, Hawaii and British Columbia and Alberta.
Fans can purchase tickets through Seahawks.com or by calling Ticketmaster at 800-745-3000.
Ryan Divish: 206-464-2373 or firstname.lastname@example.org