I read the other day where James Harrison stated that he tries to hurt other players. Not injure, but certainly hurt.
I watched one of his hits on TV the other day, and I really was shocked at his behavior. This is’t MMA. This isn’t boxing. This is football.
Yes, players should be able to tackle other players. Yes, players should be able to hit other players.
What I am seeing in the last couple of years is more and more players using their helmets to strike other players. For example, in the Pittsburgh vs. Denver game, James Harrison drove his head into the back of Kyle Orton. Orton was down on the field, and Harrison drove into him at full speed leading with his helmet. It was absolutely unnecessary. It was incredibly un-sportsmanlike. His intent was not to make sure Orton was down. His intent was clearly to hurt Orton. Maybe not to injure him, but to certainly hurt him. I call that playing dirty.
The NFL has fined some players. Harrison has been fined multiple times. Now he is crying that they are trying to change the way he plays the game. DUH! He isn’t being sportsmanlike, so yeah, he needs to change the way he plays the game. He needs to learn how to tackle and stop trying to drive his helmet into other players and trying to blow them into multiple pieces.
I was taught to not lead with my head. I was taught to not use my helmet and my head as a weapon. I was taught to not spear other players. I was taught to respect my peers. When I played football, the guys on the other teams were my friends. Even if they weren’t my friends, they deserved respect. I would never intentionally hit somebody in an unnecessary way that could hurt them because I would not want them to do the same to me. I certainly would never drive my helmet into somebody on purpose.
Players need to stop trying to use their helmets as weapons on the field. They need to realize that striking the head of other players leads to serious brain injuries. What appears to be happening is that defensive players are not subject to the same kind of hits against them that they deliver to offensive players, so they don’t have to worry about retaliation. In the last couple of years, we see more and more players suffering brain injuries because of these high velocity hits where defensive players are not really trying to tackle other players as much as they are trying to just knock them off their feet by throwing their bodies at them and leading with their heads. They are not playing the game properly, and they need to change the way they play.
it is about respect for others. These players need to learn to respect their peers.