By Dale Grdnic
PITTSBURGH — It generally takes several days for plays to be reviewed by the NFL, so Pittsburgh Steelers linebackers James Harrison and James Farrior did not expect to hear anything about their personal-foul hits on Cleveland Browns quarterback Colt McCoy even though they played Thursday night at Heinz Field.
The Steelers were penalized 15 yards for Farrior’s “late hit” on the McCoy on the sideline and also for Harrison’s “helmet-to-helmet, roughing-the-passer” hit on McCoy a split-second after he released a pass in the second half. Harrison was concerned about a suspension, either, which some believe is possible.
“I didn’t hear anything yet,” Harrison said Monday after practice. “I don’t know if I will, but we’ll see. I don’t think a suspension is worthy. I don’t think it’s worthy of anything, but that’s just my own personal thoughts.”
Harrison said he’s seen replays of the hit, but now that he’s had several days to think about it his opinion has not changed. He would have done something differently, though, now that it’s after the fact.
“Knowing that I got a penalty … yeah, I would have tried not to get it,” Harrison said. “They said it was … they didn’t call it helmet-to-helmet. They called it roughing the passer. Well, he took off running with it, and at the last second he, like, chucked and ducked. So, people can see it.
“I knew if he wasn’t past (the line of scrimmage) he was awfully close, but I didn’t have time to look to the sideline to see exactly. He tucked the ball and made like he was about to run. So, I just went to tackle him.”
There are those who believe Harrison should be heavily fined for the hit, but based on the NFL’s fine chart a first offense for roughing the passer is $15,000. A second offense is $30,000. For a helmet hit and hit on a defenseless player, they are $20,000 and $40,000.
Farrior’s late hit call could deliver a $7,500 hit to his wallet for a first offense and $15,000 for a second offense. Farrior hoped that he would not get an envelope from the league to assess him a fine.
“The fines come out Wednesday and Thursday, so we’ll see then,” Farrior said. “That’s the kind of stuff that’s out of our hands. (But) it’s all the media’s fault. You all keep reporting on it and asking about it and bringing it up.”
Farrior didn’t want to discuss Harrison’s situation, saying that he still has not seen the hit, so he didn’t want to comment on it.