Pittsburgh Steelers general manager Kevin Colbert was asked Thursday about the pending situation with linebacker James Harrison while in Indianapolis at the NFL scouting combine.
Colbert, according to report on NFL.com, said that they still haven\’t had any discussions with Harrison\’s agents about his future, but thinks that will happen after they get back from the combine.
“Whether a player is part of your future or not, that\’s not going to take away from what he accomplished, said Colbert, via the report. “You\’ll never underestimate what that player did for you in the past, but this is about what you\’re going to be in 2013. If a player can help us, then we\’ll make those decisions accordingly.”
Colbert was then asked who he sees replacing Harrison if he winds up being a salary cap casualty in a few weeks and not surprisingly the Steelers GM said it would be fourth-year linebacker Jason Worilds.
“Jason Worilds did a nice job when he was called upon last year,” said Colbert. Can he continue that? We hope. … In Jason\’s case, he\’s shown he can be productive.”
Jim Wexell of Steel City Insider wrote earlier on Thursday that he is hearing Harrison will not be released.
The Steelers could still convince Harrison to take a salary cut of around $3 million in order to help the team with the salary cap situation. While not advisable, the team could restructure the contract of Harrison in order to lower his 2013 cap hit. Harrison is under contract through the 2014 season, so there wouldn\’t be much cap relief by doing that unless that added a false year or years onto his existing deal via an extension.
The Steelers must be cap compliant by March 12, so we still might have a wait a little while longer to find out the ultimate path that they take in regard to Harrison.