Well, some people can't help themselves. James Harrison seems to be one of those people. Now, he is interviewed by Mens Journal, he stated the following things about Goodell:
"If that man was on fire and I had to piss to put him out, I wouldn't do it. I hate him and will never respect him."
Other items stated by Harrison include calling him the devil, a dictator, stupid, and other items I care not to repeat.
He then states that Ben cost the Steelers the Superbowl. Then he threw out this: "stop trying to act like Peyton Manning. You ain't that and you it, man; you just get paid like he does."
He has since reached out to Ben and claimed his words were twisted.
He also attacked Rodney Harrison and Tedy Bruschi, calling them "clowns". Mendenhall fumbled too many times for Harrison's liking as well. He called his teammate a "fumble machine". He then went on to call Brian Cushing "juiced out of his mind". Cushing simply stated "I'll pray for him" when asked about it.
One of his contentions is the fines he has been getting. It totaled $100,000 last year for illegal head shots and targeting opposing players in the head with his helmet. These rules were gone over at the beginning of the year. There was a film sent around showing what was legal and what wasn't. Harrison doesn't agree with these rules and threatened to quit last year over them.
Now, if he really doesn't like the rules and can't play by them, he could simply tear up his contract, return his pay and get a real job like the rest of us. I'm sure he won't, given his real-world skills aren't those that would lead to a successful career in the professional world. Simply put, you can't call out your boss and insult him 6 ways from Sunday and keep a job. Whether he likes it or not, playing in the NFL is a privledge, not a right. He can have it taken away from him very easily, and he seems determined to see that through.
Here are some things said by other players about Harrison's latest rantings.
LaVar Arringtion had this to say. "I have no idea what he was thinking, if anything at all, when he decided to speak the words he did about NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell. But it's inappropriate, irresponsible, low class, disrespectful and, most important, a horrible example to the people who look up to him."
Art Rooney is waiting for the lockout to be lifted to discuss the issue with him. Right now, teams can't do anything.
Now, no one is saying he can't say whatever he wants. He has the 1st amendment to fall back on. Having said that, the 1st amendment does not protect you from the ramifications of what you say. He is sure to get a call from NFL offices and Art Rooney, most likely getting a fine and possible suspension, which will bring on another round of this. I'm sure there is also a "morals clause" in his contract and this sort of behavior could get that contract voided. The value of that contract? 6 years and a total of 51 million with 4 years remaining. Go ahead James, try and find a job paying you that kind of money.
One has to wonder how much more of this is worth it for the Steelers. Every time he opens his mouth, he brings bad press to the Steelers, who really don't need anymore of it. Hines Ward was arrested for DWI, there have been the multiple issues with Roethlisberger and Harrison has had a couple of occasions previous to this where he spouted off. The Steelers don't want that kind of image.