Agent For James Harrison Has Started Appeal Process Of One Game Suspension

As expected, the appeal process has been put in motion for the one game suspension handed down this morning against Pittsburgh Steelers linebacker James Harrison for his helmet-to-helmet on Cleveland Browns quarterback Colt McCoy in the fourth quarter of the game this past Thursday night.

Gerry Dulac tweeted that Bill Parise, Harrison\’s agent, has filed an appeal with the league office on behalf of his client. The appeal process will likely be expedited now so that a decision could be handed back quickly before the Steelers Monday night game against the San Francisco 49ers.

Harrison is still required to stay away from the Steelers facility in the mean time and it is very unlikely that the one game suspension will be overturned by Art Shell or Ted Cottrell, the two league officials in charge of handling appeals.

Not only is Harrison fighting to play Monday night, he is also looking to recoup the $73,529.41 game check that he’ll be losing during his game suspension.

  • Steeler Paul on Cape Cod!

    Earlier in the televised game against Cleveland the commentators showed Mendenhall being smacked helmet to helmet by a Cleveland linebacker. No foul, they explained, since running backs aren’t subject to the same rules as players at other positions. Later there goes McCoy running with the ball tucked under his arm clearly outside the pocket and with the goal of making yardage. Harrison hit him helmet to helmet because he considered McCoy to be a running back at that point. The penalty of a suspension is ludicrous because the league has so many double standards. Yes, Harrison should have been fined, but the suspension is unjust under the circumstances. I wish the whole Steeler roster would simply refuse to play on Monday night, in solidarity with their colleague James Harrison. Wouldn’t that be something. It would shut down the league! Can you imagine what the cost would be to the league if something like this were to happen?

  • carbolaw

    If this is the discipline and the appeal process in the NFL there is no wonder the Steelers held out from ratifying the CBA. This is a ridiculous process. Under normal CBA conditions, the employer has the burden of proving the discipline was for just cause. This means they must show that the employee had adequate notice about the rule and penalty (clearly with all of the debate even amongst “experts” this was not the case), that there was a fair and adequate investigation (at the very least the player should have had a rep available prior to the penalty being handed out and their should have been an impartial fact finding body. We should know the exact time between pass and hit, the exact trajectory of Harrison’s helmet versus McCoy’s, whether the plane of McCoy’s helmet decreased as the hit was applied, etc.) the punishment must be reasonable in relation to the offense (in this case again experts disagree about the flag, much less a suspension and this is Harrison’s first flag in nearly a full season for any type of personal foul). Finally, the rule must be applied consistently, not in a discriminatory fashion. Do not give me the BS about repeat offenders – we have a player who has repeatedly punched players getting off easier. Do not give me the BS about protecting the QB – this is the FIRST suspension for a tackle during the course of play in 25 years. Further, this is far from the first helmet to helmet hit on a QB this year, yet no suspension.

    The players like every other employee in a union setting (and I would argue all employees) should only be disciplined for just cause. This suspension falls far short of that standard.

  • Stonecrab7

    I am a HUGE James Harrison fan and do not agree with the suspension. On the other hand, as to why the NFL did this to James, one only needs to look across the river to the likes of Sid the Kid, and come to the frightening but stark conclusion that he may be just one head-shot away from ending his NHL career.