As I sit in front on my computer, I can’t believe the words that I’m about to type. But the last few years of conduct within the Steeler’s organization have driven me to this point.
The Steelers have become an embarrassment!
Just two years ago, if you had asked any football fan in the country which organization was the best in football, I would be willing to bet they would say the Steelers. Fans were bashing teams such as the Raiders and Bengals for looking the other way as their players continued to break the law and disrespect basic human values. But not the Steelers, this team always seemed to demonstrate the class you would hope would be connected with such a prestigious organization.
Now I look at the Steelers, and I am somewhat disgusted at what I see. Sure…the team just went back to the Super Bowl last season, and no one doubts the product on the football field has maintained its greatness. But an organization is, and should be held accountable for more than just the record it posts in the end of a year.
I don’t even know where to begin with how upset I am with James Harrison. As a journalist myself, I know that words can be twisted in translation between a reporters recorder and a finished article. Therefore I could easily see how Harrison’s words could have been taken out of context regarding Ben Roethlisberger and Rashard Mendenhall.
I can see the reporter sitting there saying something like, “James, you must have been upset with the interceptions Ben threw in the Super Bowl, and Rashard’s big fumble.”
Harrison may have sarcastically said, “Yea Ben thinks he’s Payton Manning out there, and Rashard can be a fumble machine.”
The man is very close with both of those players, and may have thought what he was saying about them was funny. I’m willing to give him the benefit of the doubt on that one. But his comments regarding the NFL commissioner are so far out of bounds it has left my head spinning.
Keep in mind that commissioner Roger Goodell is the head of the NFL, Harrison’s employer. James was quoted saying that if Goodell was on fire; he would not piss on him to help him out. Could you imagine saying something like that to your boss in any other environment? Harrison also called Goodell a terrible gay slur, one so bad no media outlet is telling us what it was until the magazine hits newsstands tomorrow. Harrison went on to call Goodell the devil, and said he hated the man.
Now this is America, and people have the freedom to say whatever they want, but this is certainly one of those times where you wish Harrison would just shut-up.
I could probably write another 1,000 words on everything that was wrong with what Harrison did, but I think the educated fans of Steeler’s nation and the NPC followers can formulate their own opinions on how stupid Harrison can be sometimes.
NPC has covered Hines Ward’s DUI from every angle, but it does not change the fact Hines is just another Steeler in the news for the wrong reasons. It seems like every time you turn on ESPN these days, there is some breaking news on the ticker at the bottom of the screen dealing with some Steelers player, and recently, none of that news has been good.
We obviously do not have to delve into the Ben Roethlisberger rape scandal again, or the various things Santonio Holmes did to be outcast from the team, or even Mendenhall’s ridiculous comments on Twitter the night Osama Bin Laden with killed. But people have to remember that these things all happened, and it was pretty much one right after the other.
I thought getting rid of Holmes when the Steelers did was the right move. The team made a decision that it wanted to keep its squeaky clean reputation in tact, and I respected that. At this point though, is there anything the team can do to make people believe the Steelers continue to operate with the same class people have come to appreciate?
I have heard many people say Harrison should be cut for the things that he said. I think that is a little dramatic, but not completely outrageous. Harrison has once again brought extremely negative attention to the entire organization, and for no reason other than his own misplaced narcissism. It’s okay, we understand, you were cut from a bunch of teams including the Steelers early in your career and you have never forgot the way you were treated. That is what makes Harrison such an intense player on the field. But the act is getting tired. Whether it is threatening the commissioner, or your own teammates it has to stop. He has thrown many of his teammates under the bus, and there is no way of knowing how that will affect team chemistry.
The recent trend of Steelers in the news has become something I am not only embarrassed about, but truly worries me for the team’s future. For the Steelers to be known as one of most classless organizations in the league would be quite the fall from grace, and at this point I don’t think the team is far from that.