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Marla Ridenour on Sports

Suspension wouldn't deter Harrison

By Marla Published: October 18, 2010

The NFL's announcement that it will consider suspending players for helmet-to-helmet hits won't deter Steelers linebacker James Harrison, who knocked out Browns receivers Joshua Cribbs and Mohamed Massaquoi Sunday.

Harrison wouldn't be in the NFL if he didn't play this way. He's been a physical player at Coventry and Hoban high schools, at Kent State and with the Pittsburgh Steelers. His style earned him 2008 NFL Defensive Player of the Year honors. It's the reason he finally stuck with the Steelers after getting cut multiple times.

Harrison changed the game with his helmet to helmet hit on a running Cribbs, operating out of the Wildcat formation. Before Cribbs was hurt with 9:12 left in the second quarter, the Browns had already used the Wildcat four times after being reluctant to go to it in the previous five games. With rookie quarterback Colt McCoy starting for the Browns, he'd hoped to have the Wildcat as a security blanket. With one hit, Harrison took that away.

Receiver Hines Ward lauded Harrison afterward for being ''a beast.'' The Steelers love their beast and won't tell him to change, even if he's suspended for the blow to Massaquoi.

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