After the Steelers released him and he landed with the Patriots, James Harrison has commented on the situation.
After he only played five games and 40 snaps for them this season, the Pittsburgh Steelers released linebacker James Harrison last Saturday. He visited and signed with the New England Patriots on Tuesday, which has invited conspiracy theories about Bill Belichick trying to get extra intel for a potential playoff rematch against the Steelers.
Harrison’s now-former teammates seemed to he happy to see him go, as he reportedly slept during meetings and would leave the stadium if he was not active for a game. The 39-year old was surely not happy with his lack of a role, after signing a two-year deal during the offseason, and seemed to be openly acting out to force his release.
Harrison’s Instagram feed is generally a way to show off his exhibitions in the weight room, or more recently he posted about finally having a teammate older than he is in Tom Brady.
But in some effort to clear the air, Harrison used that medium to comment on his departure from the Steelers.
Harrison apparently saw the writing on the wall very early in the season, and asked to be released. After weeks of apparent inconsistency and false starts in terms of his practice reps and game day role, he asked to be released again and was told no at that point.
Harrison also offered his side of the criticism levied on him by Steelers’ linebacker Bud Dupree.
“Also, to be clear, ask Ryan [Shazier] if I came to see him in the hospital. I didn’t help Bud [Dupree] or T.J. [Watt]? As TJ if I helped him.”
To his credit, Harrison did acknowledge a business decision made by the Steelers and the subsequent business decision he had to make. He may not talk about it anymore, but the story will resurface if the Steelers and Patriots meet again in the playoffs.