Tag:James Harrison
Posted on: December 4, 2010 12:05 pm
Edited on: December 4, 2010 12:05 pm
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NFL denies targeting Steelers James Harrison

Posted by Will Brinson

Everyone that is in the NFL, around the NFL or talking about the NFL believes that the league is targeting the Steelers' James Harrison with its illegal hit policy.

This includes Harrison's boss, Pittsburgh's owner Art Rooney, and even his most bitter rivals (Terrell Suggs of the Ravens recently said that Harrison was 'red-flagged' by the NFL).

But it does not include the NFL itself.

"I would say that's misguided and, frankly, completely untrue," Ray Anderson, NFL VP of Football Operations told the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. "Every team and every player, hopefully, will have the confidence that, if they play within the rules, we won't have this problem."

In fact, Anderson wouldn't even discuss the specifics of Harrison's complaint.

"We won't respond to any particular player and certainly we won't respond to players who may have appeal cases pending," Anderson said.

He then went on to point out that if a player can't adjust their particular playing style, then they will end up "sitting and watching games like you and me." (While I doubt that Anderson watches the game the same way as everyone else, his point is taken.)

Anyway, here's the thing: the NFL isn't targeting Harrison, or ordering their refs to "target" Harrison and continually hit him with fines. They just aren't.

Think of it like a third-grade classroom: there's always one kid who qualifies as the bully. This kid picks on other kids in a manner that's against the classroom rules. Said kid, for picking on others, gets in trouble frequently. Because of this, if the bully goes near a corner of the classroom inhabited by nerds, the teacher keeps a close eye on that kid.

It's just how life works -- and the exact same thing is applicable to Chad Ochocinco and Terrell Owens, only with endzone celebrations.

If someone keeps begging the league and the public to watch what they do (note to Harrison here: threatening to retire is not a good way of keeping attention off yourself), well -- surprise-surprise! -- the league and the public will absolutely watch what they do.

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Posted on: December 3, 2010 11:28 am
 

Rooney thinks the NFL targeting the Steelers

J. Harrison has racked up $125,000 in fines this year due to illegal hits (US Presswire). Posted by Josh Katzowitz

With the $125,000 in fines Steelers LB James Harrison has racked up this season, Pittsburgh owner Art Rooney II thinks there might be something to the idea that his squad is being scrutinized by the league with extra-sensitive eyes.
 
He’s also worried the Steelers might stop playing as aggressively on defense because of the threat of fines for big-time hits.

So, is Pittsburgh being targeted?

"It certainly looks that way," Rooney told the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review. "Not that we're expecting much sympathy from other teams, but I think some of this will be part of the discussion after the season is over. Hopefully we'll all have our chances to express our opinions and at that point have a better understanding of where the owners in the league stand on some of this.

"I think we're sympathetic to the idea that we need to focus on player safety and particularly on helmet-to-helmet hits. The other side of it is it's still a football game, and I think we've got to be realistic about how the rules can be changed and what we expect of the defensive players in particular."

From the story:

Ray Anderson, the NFL's executive vice president of football operations, told the Tribune-Review yesterday that the league is not singling out Harrison.

Anderson did put the onus on Harrison to play within NFL rules. He added if the Steelers' sacks leader continues to run afoul of them that it could see him suspended.

"At the end of the day we have an important responsibility, and if that means at some point we have to remove a player from the field to get the message clearly in his mind and to protect players that he's violating, we will do so," said Anderson, whose office reviews every play from a given week and decides if any warrant fines. "But we hope that doesn't come to pass."

Harrison said earlier this week that he won't change his style of play and "will let the chips fall where they may."

Look, I have some sympathy for Harrison, because the NFL saw fit to change its rules in the middle of the season and because everybody is still confused about what is and what is not a legal hit.

But the fact of the matter is that these rulings are not going to change (this season, at least). So, if Harrison isn’t going to adjust his style of play, he can expect the NFL to keep taking his money.

He can decry the fact he’s been targeted – and you’re crazy if you don’t think officials are keeping an extra eye on him at all times (that’s what happens when you develop a reputation like this) – but if other players can tweak their styles to avoid the potential for badly injuring players, it’s not impossible for Harrison to do the same.

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Posted on: December 1, 2010 11:42 pm
 

Suggs says Harrison has been 'red-flagged'

Posted by Will Brinson

There's really only one option when you start wondering who's been most affected by the NFL's new revised tackling policy. It's James Harrison. (Although, I guess, you could make a case that because he hasn't bothered changing how he's played, he hasn't been affected.)

And other players agree, like Terrell Suggs of the Baltimore Ravens who, on this week's conference call with Pittsburgh media, pointed out that Harrison has been "red-flagged."

"Your guy over there, 92, I think he is red-flagged," Suggs said via the Pittsburgh Tribune. "The referees are kind of looking for him. Even if he breathes on a quarterback wrong, he might get a flag."

That's hyperbole, of course, but it's not too far off -- Harrison's been hit up for $125,000 in fines thus far, and has drawn his share of flags for big hits in 2010. But Suggs doesn't think it's just defenders who get preferential treatment.

"The league has their favorites," Suggs said. "One being in Indy and one being with that other team up north. Besides those two, everybody is fair game. Some quarterbacks are getting the calls right away. Some quarterbacks they don’t care."

This is what's commonly known as "superstar treatment," and, frankly, it's something that's just part of the game.

If you're a star, you're going to get more benefit of the doubt, and if you're an antagonizer who frequently hits quarterbacks late and/or drops illegal hits on other players, the league and it's referees are going to take notice. As Harrison's wallet can attest, they already spotted him.

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Posted on: November 30, 2010 6:14 pm
 

Harrison fined yet again ($25,000 edition)

Posted by Josh Katzowitz

Another week, another fine for Steelers LB James Harrison.

Despite saying after the game he didn’t expect to be penalized monetarily for his hit against a defenseless Bills QB Ryan Fitzpatrick, Harrison had an incorrect opinion. Instead, as the Pittsburgh Post Gazette writes, the NFL fined Harrison $25,000 for his illegal hit last Sunday.

The NFL ruled Harrison’s helmet-to-chest hit was illegal because Fitzpatrick was in a defenseless position at the time.

For Harrison, it’s his fourth fine of the season, totaling $125,000.

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Posted on: November 30, 2010 3:43 pm
Edited on: November 30, 2010 3:46 pm
 

Report: Steelers' Harrison fined another $25K

Posted by Will Brinson

Sunday has come and gone and that means it's time for our weekly James Harrison fine! At least it feels like he gets a weekly hit anyway.

According to Ed Bouchette of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, Harrison was fined another $25,000 by the NFL for a hit on Ryan Fitzpatrick during the Bills-Steelers game.

Harrison's now totaled $125,000 in fines for the 2010 NFL season, and probably faces an uphill battle to have this fine rescinded, following the league's denial of his appeal for an earlier set of fines this week.

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Posted on: November 30, 2010 3:43 pm
Edited on: November 30, 2010 3:46 pm
 

Report: Steelers' Harrison fined another $25K

Posted by Will Brinson

Sunday has come and gone and that means it's time for our weekly James Harrison fine! At least it feels like he gets a weekly hit anyway.

According to Ed Bouchette of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, Harrison was fined another $25,000 by the NFL for a hit on Ryan Fitzpatrick during the Bills-Steelers game.

Harrison's now totaled $125,000 in fines for the 2010 NFL season, and probably faces an uphill battle to have this fine rescinded, following the league's denial of his appeal for an earlier set of fines this week.

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Posted on: November 29, 2010 6:32 pm
Edited on: November 29, 2010 6:33 pm
 

NFL rejects James Harrison's fine appeals

Posted by Will Brinson

Since the NFL started asserting its authority on players who lay big hits on other players, James Harrison has racked up $96,000 in fines, with possibly more coming this week after a roughing the passer call against Buffalo's Ryan Fitzpatrick.

His first instinct told him to retire, but eventually he appealed those fines. And now his appeal has been denied by the NFL.

That's according to Ed Bouchette of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, who spoke to Harrison's agent Bill Parise, after the agent received an email from the NFL indicating the rejection.

"They did not reduce it," Parise said. "They said it was multiple occurrences and called it an egregious act -- that's a big word isn't it?"

The fines in question were the $75,000 fine for hitting Mohamed Massaquoi on October 17th (remember the week everyone freaked out and the NFL decided to cleanse the game of concussions?) and a Halloween hit on Drew Brees that cost him $20,000.

There's no real surprise here -- Harrison's style of play has drawn the financial ire of the league and because he's so often been mentioned on the list of players getting fined and/or flagged, it seemed unlikely he'd get any leniency here.

Although you have to imagine he's just thrilled to hear about the fines handed down to Andre Johnson and Cortland Finnegan for throwing punches with their helmets off after the whistle.

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Posted on: November 28, 2010 7:47 pm
Edited on: November 28, 2010 8:09 pm
 

Harrison says he did nothing wrong

R. Fitzpatrick took a shot here from Pittsburgh's J. Harrison that could land Harrison another fine (US Presswire). Posted by Josh Katzowitz

Today’s installment of James-Harrison-is-flagged-for-unnec
essary-roughness, the Steelers LB got the flag for smacking Bills QB Ryan Fitzpatrick in the chin with the crown of his helmet.

For a guy who’s been fined $100,000 this year for infractions such as this, he really doesn’t seem to care about the rules that govern NFL football. Either that, or he doesn’t care about saving his money.

After the game, Harrison said he did nothing wrong.

"It's the same exact thing if you go back and look at the play from last week," he told reporters after the game. "I got the same flag (last week), but I didn't get a fine."

For his part, Pittsburgh coach Mike Tomlin wasn’t interested in discussing the topic.

“I don’t even want to talk about it,” he said.

Chances are, if Harrison hears from this league this week, he’ll be champing at the bit to discuss his feelings. And perhaps he’ll start thinking about retiring again.



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