James Harrison is nuts.
He set the internet ablaze on Wednesday with a published interview in Men’s Journal that ripped NFL commissioner Roger Goodell, Houston Texans linebacker Brian Cushing, Green Bay Packers linebacker Clay Matthews, and most notably, teammates Rashard Mendenhall and Ben Roethlisberger.
The Pittsburgh Steelers linebacker didn’t just rip Goodell, Harrison sent a flame thrower his way. Calling your boss “a puppet” or a gay slur is not the wisest maneuver; and then, stating that if Goodell was on fire you wouldn’t douse him with urine as an extinguisher doesn’t help either.
Also, Harrison is featured in the new Men’s Journal brandishing two guns, both of which are commonly seen with Mexican drug cartels.
I’m guessing the league will not like that either.
Goodell not winning a popularity contest is far from earth-shattering news; nor is suspicion over New England’s three Super Bowl victories during the 2000s.
Harrison didn’t mince any words while discussing his thoughts on the 2004 season and New England’s Super Bowl victory during that season:
“I should have another ring. We were the best team in football in 2004, but the Patriots, who we beat during the regular season, stole our signals and picked up 90 percent of our blitzes [in the AFC title game]. They got busted for it later, but, hey, they’re Goodell’s boys, so he slapped ‘em $500,000 and burned the tapes. Was he going to rescind their Super Bowls? Man, hell no!”
Surely, no one reminded Harrison that the Steelers are 0-2 versus the Bill Belichick/Tom Brady-led Patriots since the post-Spygate fine.
Perhaps the most surprising element of Harrison’s interview dealt with his comments about teammates over their Super Bowl XLV performances.
The funny part about Harrison’s Super Bowl XLV complaints is that none of them were pointed in his own direction.
One of Super Bowl XLIII’s heroes, the former NFL Defensive Player of the Year came up supremely small last February against Green Bay.
Harrison gathered one tackle (a sack) and made little impact in Pittsburgh’s 31-25 loss to the Packers.
Harrison’s barbs directed to Mendenhall and Roethlisberger will be the least of his concerns over the upcoming weeks.
When a player is holding two guns in a magazine article and publicly berates the commissioner, retribution will come from Park Avenue once the lockout is over.
James Harrison should be suspended at least one game.
Following an offseason where the league and players have somewhat damaged the game’s image through labor unrest, allowing a loose cannon to pop off without any type of punishment sends a bad message.
When Week 1 takes place, Harrison should be suspended for it.
He embarrassed his team and once again, himself.