Harvin garnering knowledge from Favre

Rookie Percy Harvin is only 21 years old, but he's making sure to learn from a certain 39-year-old quarterback now on the Vikings roster. Harvin had high praise for what he's already picked up in talking with Favre and Favre returned the compliments.

Percy Harvin is young, but the rookie knows a good opportunity when he sees it. The wide receiver sees an 18-year veteran of the National Football League who is a future Hall of Famer and can't help but want to learn everything he can from Brett Favre.

Harvin didn't hold back, either, when talking about the effects Favre is having on his learning curve.

"It's great, and not only the reps but just practicing with him," Harvin said.

"He's taught me more than any coach taught me just in the short period of time that he's been here. Actually being out there and getting reps with him and talking about things at practice, but to come out here and get some of the things that we talked about, and get it down, it was good."

High praise, indeed, as the Vikings begin to realize some of the intangible benefits of the Favre signing.

In return, Favre sees Harvin's talents and doesn't mind offering a mentoring shoulder in the rookie's first year, but Favre also said he believes in keeping things simple, even after 18 years in the NFL.

Harvin is an exciting playmaker with the ball in his hands, whether he is returning kickoffs, executing the Wildcat or catching passes, but he has been called for illegal shifts while being asked to serve many roles for the Vikings. So how much will Favre look to mentor him?

"As much as needed. We all make mistakes," Favre said. "He's got football knowledge. I think that's something you're born with; you can't coach it. You really can't coach speed and quickness and things like that."

But a little old-school player mentoring rarely hurts, and Favre isn't the only former Green Bay Packer helping out Harvin. Favre said Harvin was also working with Antonio Freeman earlier this summer. The quarterback believes that, too, should help the rookie.

"To me, (Freeman) was a perfect example – I don't want to say he was an overachiever, but he didn't have the talent that Percy has – but yet we all know how productive he was," Favre said. "He had great football knowledge. Percy, I see that in him. He has a feel for certain things."

Of course, all of this talk of mentoring after signing only 15 days ago might lead some to believe that Favre doesn't have much left to learn on his own. He indicated that is far from the truth.

While the playmakers surrounding the 39-year-old quarterback are intriguing, he knows they will look even better with a passer that is instinctive in the system. Favre isn't there yet.

"There's a lot of playmakers. How we use them and how I fit into the mix, just without looking at the film, I know there's some plays I can make. Just a trust standpoint with these guys that I probably didn't attempt," Favre said. "… There's a lot of weapons. I think we can be very productive, but not if we make the mistakes we did (Monday) night. We left a lot of points … a lot of yardage and opportunities on the field."

And, yet, the Vikings were still the better team with a recently signed old-time gunslinger and a saddle bag packing a young bullet like Harvin.

NOTES

  • The Vikings entered Monday night's game without giving up a sack or turning the ball over. They still don't have a turnover, but Houston registered four sacks on Minnesota quarterbacks. Mario Williams sacked Favre on the Vikings' second possession when we wrapped all the way around the defensive line from his right end position and came around the left end on a play that Favre likely just held onto the ball too long. On the first play of the second quarter, Favre was sacked again when linebacker DeMeco Ryans came on a blitz. Tarvaris Jackson and Sage Rosenfels also took sacks in their short second-half stints.

    Houston's four sacks were a preseason high for the team.

  • The Vikings registered only one sack – by Jared Allen on Matt Schaub. Minnesota had nine sacks over its first two preseason games.

  • The Texans defense shut out Minnesota in the second half. It was the first time the Texans shut out an opponent in the second half since Aug. 14, 2004, when the Texans defeated Dallas 18-0.

  • While Favre said he still has work to do, he believes he made the right decision to come back and play. "I know I can still play. I wouldn't have come back. How well I'll play this year, time will tell," he said. "No one can make predictions, but I would not have come back if I didn't think I could play at a high enough level or I didn't think I could help this team win. I hope I prove myself right."

  • Adrian Peterson's 75-yard touchdown run to open the game was the longest of his career, but it should surprise no one when he breaks off an explosive run. According to NFL statistics, he led the league with 20 carries of 20-plus yards last year.


    Tim Yotter is the publisher of Viking Update. Follow Viking Update on Twitter and discuss this story on our subscriber message board.


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