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Percy Harvin welcomed with open arms by Jets

Jets wide receiver Percy Harvin (16) is greeted

Jets wide receiver Percy Harvin (16) is greeted by assistant strength and conditioning coach Aaron McLaurin, left, while working out during practice in Florham Park, N.J., Monday, Oct. 20, 2014. Photo Credit: AP / Rich Schultz

FLORHAM PARK, N.J. - The past is the past.

That was the Jets' message to Percy Harvin in the wake of his trade from Seattle. And the team's newest receiver couldn't be happier.

"The coaching staff, the management, on to the owner, they are not worried about it," Harvin said Monday, adding that he and Jets coach Rex Ryan shared "laughs" over his reputation as a troubled but talented player.

"I have even tried to explain a couple things. They told me to be quiet about it and not even worry about it, so it has been all smiles here. Nobody is holding anything against me."

Rather than worry about Harvin's history of being a locker-room headache, Jets general manager John Idzik said he's focused on the new receiver's playmaking ability.

"I look at it as, this could be a potential coup for the Jets in acquiring a player of Percy's talent and his caliber," Idzik said two days after the Jets announced the trade for the former Seahawk in exchange for a conditional draft pick.

"So it's really immersing him into what it is to act like a Jet, to be like a Jet, to play like a Jet. And I'm confident that he'll respond."

Idzik added that the decision to sign "an explosive player" like Harvin was done strictly to help their 26th-ranked offense.

Despite his obvious talent, two NFL teams have given up on Harvin, 26, in a 19-month span. He was the 22nd overall pick of the Vikings in 2009 but was traded to Seattle in March 2013 for first- and seventh-round picks in the 2013 draft and a third-round pick in 2014.

Within hours after the trade was reported Friday, stories surfaced regarding Harvin's locker-room disruptions.

Former Seahawks fullback Michael Robinson said on NFL Network on Sunday that he had to break up a fight between Harvin and receiver Golden Tate the day before their Super Bowl XLVIII win over the Broncos at MetLife Stadium last February.

Harvin reportedly had an altercation with Seahawks receiver Doug Baldwin that resulted in Baldwin getting a cut on his chin and each player being excused from practices that week.

The Seattle Times reported that Harvin refused to re-enter the game against Dallas in the fourth quarter on Oct. 12.

Harvin acknowledged "some things did happen" in Seattle, but he said he "never" deliberately sat out against Dallas. He acknowledged that he had issues with how he was used.

"I wanted to get downfield just a little bit more," said Harvin, who has 22 catches for 133 yards and 11 rushes for 92 yards and a touchdown this season. "That definitely caused frustration."

That shouldn't be an issue with the Jets, who are 1-6 and ranked near the bottom of the NFL in overall offense. And Harvin seemed genuinely excited about playing with Geno Smith, Eric Decker and good friends Michael Vick and Chris Johnson.

Idzik, who was the Seahawks' vice president of football administration from 2007-12, said he did "a ton of background" on Harvin and had "very forthright conversations" with Seattle. Idzik wouldn't say whether it was he or Seattle general manager John Schneider who reached out first, but both parties spoke last week. However, it wasn't until after the Jets' 27-25 loss in New England on Thursday night "that things crystallized," Idzik said.

But despite Harvin's history of being a handful with the Vikings and then with the Seahawks, Idzik stressed that "they're all different environments than here in New York. We feel like we have a very healthy environment for players, and that's a tribute to the character that we have in our locker room currently."

Ryan echoed those sentiments: "Everybody makes mistakes. Some things just don't work at some places. At other places, they seem to work fine. So we'll see how it goes."

Idzik also had done his due diligence on running back Mike Goodson, who was arrested in May 2013 on weapons and drug charges just two months after he was signed. He later was released for skipping the first day of mandatory minicamp.

But Idzik doesn't seem concerned that Harvin's off-field issues will follow him to New Jersey.

Asked if he sees Harvin as a potentially disruptive force in the locker room, Idzik said: "Right now, no."

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