Vikings WR/KR Percy Harvin added the 2009 Pepsi Rookie of the Year Award to an accolade-filled rookie resume on Thursday. Harvin was selected by fans – who decide the award with online voting – out of a talented group of finalists that included Bills S Jairus Byrd, Texans LB Brian Cushing, Packers LB Clay Matthews and Ravens T Michael Oher.
“This is a tremendous honor and I want to thank all the Vikings fans and NFL fans who took the time to vote,” Harvin said. “This really does mean a lot and I appreciate the support. I also have to thank my teammates and coaches who helped me out so much this season and put me in positions to succeed.”
Harvin was also named the Associated Press Offensive Rookie of the Year, Pro Football Weekly Offensive Rookie of the Year and was selected to the Pro Bowl as a kick returner, though he did not participate.
Dubbed “the little phenom” by teammate Adrian Peterson, Harvin joins Peterson (2007) as the only other Viking to be the Pepsi NFL Rookie of the Year and is the first WR to garner the honor in its 8-year history. He was nominated as the Pepsi NFL Rookie of the Week 7 times throughout the season, winning twice after outstanding performances against the Pittsburgh Steelers and Green Bay Packers in Weeks 8 and 9.
Harvin, the Vikings 1st round pick (22nd overall) in last year’s NFL draft, quickly transitioned into an explosive and productive NFL player after a prolific career at the University of Florida that included a pair of BCS National Championship victories. His versatility and toughness made him one of the Vikings most dangerous weapons, both on offense and on special teams.
In 15 regular season games, Harvin set a Vikings record with 2,081 all-purpose yards, a total that ranked him 2nd in the NFC. He had 60 receptions – tied for the lead among rookies – for 790 yards and 6 TDs and 135 rushing yards on 15 attempts, setting a franchise record for rushing yards by a WR and also leading all rookie non-kickers in scoring and registering 24 receptions on 3rd down. Harvin became the 2nd Vikings player (Peterson) in the past 3 seasons to be named AP Offensive Rookie of the Year.
Harvin also recorded 2 kickoff returns for a TD, including a 101-yarder, and ranked 4th in the NFL with a 27.5-yard kickoff return average (42 returns for 1,156 yards) despite teams consistently kicking away from him during the 2nd half of the season.
Tags: Adrian Peterson, Percy Harvin
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