Report: Steelers \”On The Verge\” Of Releasing LB James Harrison

It should come as no surprise to you that Mike Garafolo of USA Today is reporting on Friday that  that Pittsburgh Steelers are “on the verge” of releasing outside linebacker James Harrison.

Garafolo reports that the two sides, which includes Harrison\’s agent Bill Parise, have been speaking regularly and talked again on Friday. According to a source of Garafolo\’s, there\’s still been no progress in getting Harrison to take a cut to his $6.57 million base salary that he is scheduled to earn in 2013.

Parise has been trying to get the Steelers to restructure Harrison\’s contract instead, but doing that would push off even more potential dead money into 2014. The Steelers would like Harrison to stay, but it is obvious that he will need to take a pay cut of around $3 million or more in order for that to happen.

The new league year starts on Tuesday at 4:00 p.m. eastern time and the Steelers still need to tender any restricted free agents that they wish to retain prior to that. The situation with Harrison has now come to a head and something could happen as soon as this evening.

  • steeltown

    status quo

  • Primanti05

    C’mon Silverback…..stay with the Black n Gold…help the team and take a pay cut…we paid you when you were hurt…

  • Dave, can you answer what the justification behind cutting Harrison but keeping Colon seems to be? I know there is less cap savings with Colon, but it seems to me it makes sense to cut him and keep Foster for their respective prices.

  • HarryBackside

    I’ll be surprised if a decision isn’t made today. By now both sides have put their cards on the table, so what else is there to talk about? If the Steelers feel they have no other option but to release Harrison, they will do it sooner rather than later so that Harrison can get a head start in FA

  • Guest

    The two very nice girls I met in Cabo and James Harrison’s incepting Warner for a TD in the Super Bowl…..two of the best nights of my life!

  • Jollyrob68

    Colon won’t get cut until June because then it saves 5 million and dead money can be spread over 2years. That money in June can be used to sign draft picks.

  • Jollyrob68

    But sometimes you have to move forward. It’s that time. Should be for more than Harrison

  • Chad Prince

    The two very friendly girls I met in Cabo and James Harrison’s interception return for a touchdown in the Super Bowl…..two things I will never forget!

  • zyzak

    Dont believe everything you read in usa today, they are rank

  • nikgreene

    Is there any chance they release, and after finding the market for his services, limited signs back at reduced rate anyway? Just wondering if release means the bridge has been burned.

  • mghjr88

    Interesting, Harrison must have picked that one up from Leo DiCaprio.

  • Garrett Hunt

    i understand the desire not to take a pay cut trying to make money before he is out of the game, but if he was smart he would cave in before it’s too late. Even with the pay cut, he will prob make more with the Steelers than with another team (if he even gets signed). Not to mention have the best chance at success in Pittsburgh.

  • My concern there is that we don’t end up with a replacement in the meantime (much as I would like Cooper or Warmack) and let Foster walk, then we are stuck with him. It makes sense waiting til June, yes, but only if we cover ourselves in the meantime.

  • Dan

    There is no reason to do anything before Tuesday. If both sides are truly interesting in making an agreement (and I’m not certain they are), it would make sense to let it go down to the wire. I have mixed feelings about what they should do. This article makes it sound like there is posturing going on, and generally you only posture if you’re interesting in making a deal.

  • HarryBackside

    I doubt there is much posturing by the Steelers. They know where they need Harrison’s salary to be, and value him to much to jerk him around. I don’t see this as a situation where the team is trying to get him as cheap as possible. Maybe from Harrison’s side, but they don’t hold the cards. I think it’s much more likely that the team made a take it or leave it offer with a deadline attached.

    There’s incentive for the Steelers to get this wrapped up ASAP. They need to know where they stand from a cap space before FA starts. The sooner the better.

  • Exactly.

  • SteelSpine

    Who is Mike Garafalo of USA Today. & how would he would have a source nobody else has. Wonder if its just another writer just playing the odds. The odds now being of course since nothing has happened thusfar, & March 12th soon here, odds are a player with that contract is probably going to be a cut.
    Harrison has been debated ad nauseam already.

  • RMSteeler

    Players regularly have clauses in contracts such as # of sacks and/or interceptions, TD recepts, All Pro, League and Super Bowl MVP that pay specific amounts if the player reaches those benchmarks. How is that money accounted for for cap purposes. And, is it possible for an offer of a pay cut of say $3 mil, with performance incentive clauses for James that wouldn’t impact this year’s cap?

  • walter mason

    I think thats possible but only if no other teams want him.

  • grw1960

    The worst part of it is, what Harrison is actually supposed to be getting paid for the 2013 season is cheap at that price ,if he plays at equal or above what he played in 2012. And there is no reason to think that he can’t do that.

  • mokhkw

    Bio says “Covering the NFL for USA Today after eight seasons covering the Giants for The Star-Ledger.” His article, while not word for word, seems to mirror Ed Bouchette’s article from the 7th ( a day earlier) with the inclusion of an “anonymous source”. I can’t see any reason why there would be any finalization of this before Monday at the earliest; it’s obviously a hardball negotiation and both sides will be holding out for the best deal until the deadline.

  • dave

    I’d say his agent already scoped out the market and has a
    pretty good idea that other teams will pay more than the Steelers offer – or he
    would have taken the Steelers offer. (Unless
    his agent is totally incompetent)