Florida football: 5 great players who didn’t live up to the NFL hype

Derrick Harvey, Florida Gators. (Photo by Joe Robbins/Getty Images)
Derrick Harvey, Florida Gators. (Photo by Joe Robbins/Getty Images) /
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Overrated Florida Football players
Percy Harvin, Florida Gators. (Photo by J. Meric/Getty Images) /

Pick Analysis. player. WR. (2006-08). Percy Harvin. 3. 840. Scouting Report

During the Urban Meyer era in Gainesville, few players were as electrifying as Percy Harvin. Playing off one of the greatest players college football has ever seen in quarterback Tim Tebow, Harvin was Meyer’s SEC equivalent of Reggie Bush in the offense. If you got the ball in Harvin’s hands, good things were bound to happen.

Harvin won two national championships while at Florida, earning All-American status as a junior in 2008. That was the zenith of the Meyer era in Gainesville, and Harvin quickly took his talents to the NFL. He would be a first-round pick by the Minnesota Vikings where he would have good, but fleeting success.

Harvin was a Pro Bowler as a rookie in 2009 and was named NFL Rookie of the Year, primarily for his abilities in the return game. However, things started to go south in the latter years of his rookie contract. Harvin never had a 1,000-yard receiving season in the NFL, though he did come close in 2011. What really unraveled Harvin’s NFL career was his issues with migraine headaches.

From 2012 to 2016, Harvin never appeared in more than nine games in a season. While he was key in the Seattle Seahawks clobbering the Denver Broncos in Super Bowl 48, Harvin only played in one regular-season game for them before the playoffs started. By the end of his career, he was merely an overcompensated gadget player. He’ll always be looked like the SEC-lite version of Bush.