This week's 'Who Powred Through' post is devoted to James Harrison, who saw his 2010 fine total escalate to $125,000 after this past Sunday. As frustrated as he must be, Steeler Nation only hopes that Harrison continues to play the game the way he has...the right way.
The following was written on Wednesday evening by James Harrison on his official Fan Page on Facebook. I thought I would share it in its entirety for several reasons: (1) it's rare that athletes dare speak their mind like this....(2) Harrison makes some outstanding points and raises interesting questions - namely, where does the fine money go to exactly?...(3) his well-reasoned and articulate post suggests that Deebo is a very introspective, intelligent man.
Very impressive, but don't take my word for it. Read on.
I'm going to rant one good time and get it over with. So the NFL says they are extremely worried about player safety, right? But the League wants to add two more games and make it an 18 game season even though they are fully aware of the physical toll playing the game takes on every player and they know the physical... condition players are in at the end of the season? Plus....more games = more chances for players to get concussions and other injuries. And starting in March, players will no longer have health insurance provided by the League because of the potential lockout, but they are so concerned about player safety, right?
So the League is so concerned for player safety. So they fine $25k for an out and out boxing match on the field in the middle of a game, but they fine me a total of $125k for doing my job. With that being said, I am doing my job the same exact way I did my job in 2008 when the League honored me with the Defensive Player of the Year Award.
And another thing... the League fined Denver's coach $50k and the team $50k for outright cheating by filming another team's practice. That makes me think that maybe the League doesn't consider cheating, which compromises the integrity of the entire game, quite as important as what THEY recently decided to consider illegal hits (when most players, coaches, fans and anybody with an ounce of football common sense can see they are clean, legal hits).
While we are talking about cheating, what ever happened with the New England Patriot's cheating scandal a few years back? They were caught cheating for what turned out to be years and ended up with total fines of $500,000 for the coach and $250,000 for the team. But that whole thing was swept under the rug, you barely hear a thing about it now, but I'm being burned at the proverbial stake and fined a total of $125,000 in two months for doing my job well.
Speaking of fines.....where does all this fine money go? Exactly where does it end up? Everyone knows it goes to a charitable organization. But which charitable organization? Who are the board members, directors and interested parties in the organizations that benefit from what amounts to MILLIONS of dollars a year? I wonder if any of them are NFL executives.
The fined players can't pick where the money goes, but I think it's reasonable to expect to at least see where it ends up...what do you think? I wonder if the League takes off an administrative fee from the total before the donation is given....just a thought. If anyone has any details or a report, please email it to me or something.
There is one good thing that has resulted from this whole situation. I started The James Harrison Family Foundation so I can help kids that need it. At least I'll know where that money's going.
But hey...what do I know? I may have given, strike that, I mean taken one too many hits to the head...
Keep on keeping on Mr. Harrison. Steeler Nation stands behind you 100 percent from all corners of the globe.