James Harrison Suspension: NFL Denies Appeal

The NFL on Friday upheld a suspension of Pittsburgh’s James Harrison, meaning the 4-time Pro Bowl linebacker will miss the Steelers’ game Monday against the San Francisco 49ers.

Harrison was given a one-game suspension without pay — estimated to cost him about $75,000 — for a helmet-to-helmet hit against Cleveland quarterback Colt McCoy in the fourth quarter of a 14-3 Steelers victory over the Browns on Dec. 8.

Though McCoy finished the game, he was later diagnosed as having a concussion and is expected to be out of the lineup for his team’s next match-up versus Arizona on Sunday.

As pointed out by ESPN, NFL guidelines indicate that Harrison’s was a cumulative punishment for his fifth illegal hit on a QB in the last three years.

Speaking on the incident, Steelers safety Ryan Clark said:

“I’m not surprised. You’re appealing to the same people who put the suspension in place, so no, I’m not surprised at all. I don’t care about the league’s message anymore. It’s about us as a football team playing the type of football that’s going to help us win championships, despite who gets suspended, despite who gets fined.”

Clark added: “”We have to continue playing and just roll with the punches and try to win games without one of our best players.”

Following the NFL’s decision to uphold the 1-game ban, Harrison took to Twitter to voice his own opinion. He wrote:

“17 games,1000+ snaps, 100+ tackles, 12+sacks and 2 forces fumbles since my last incident and I get a suspension for a football play!”

In case you haven’t seen James Harrison’s hit on Colt McCoy yet, you can watch it below: