As was expected, the NFL issued a one-game suspension to Pittsburgh Steelers linebacker James Harrison on Tuesday. The suspension stems from his helmet-to-helmet hit that gave Cleveland Browns quarterback Colt McCoy a concussion, though Harrison’s past penchant for fine-inducing hits likely had something to do with it.
This is one of those situations where it depends on what side of the fence you were on before the incident took place. Browns players and fans are going to defend McCoy and call out Harrison for taking a cheap shot, as wide receiver/kick returner Josh Cribbs has done, while Steelers fans and players are going to stand by the physical linebacker.
No one wants to take away from the physicality of the sport – it’s one of football’s most redeeming qualities. But with the NFL’s crackdown on head injuries (which was the right move to make), it’s not surprising to see a suspension for a repeat offender like Harrison. Some people may not like it, but it was a deserving punishment.