Thursday, November 20, 2008

James Harrison: 2007 Steelers MVP, 2008 NFL Defensive MVP?

The Pittsburgh Steelers have two "Lightning Bolt" outside linebackers, James Harrison, their 2007 team MVP and rookie LaMarr Woodley. Both players are having outstanding seasons, but Harrison seems to have elevated hinself to that special level reserved for League Defensive MVPs.

Carson Palmer sacked during happier times for him.

(Above Left) James Harrison mugshot. (Above) Popular shirt worn by Steeler fans.

What makes James Harrison, like Fast Willie Parker, so popular is that amazingly both men joined the Steelers as undrafted free agents. Harrison is recognized as the strongest Steeler and one of the strongest in the entire league. Harrison can bench 465 pounds and squat an unbelievable 700 pounds! Little wonder how with his relatively short (6'0 inch) frame that he can routinely run over, under and around much larger offensive linemen.

Popular photo of James Harrison doing household chores ( in this case taking out the trash in Cleveland)

One of the most famous plays that Harrison has been involved in occured against the San Diego Chargers in 2005. He intercepted a pass from Drew Brees and then leaped over LaDanian Tomlinson as he attempted to make a tackle.
Last week was the second time that he was named "Defensive Player of the Week" by the NFL as he had a sack that led to a safety, an interception that led to a field goal and stopped a serious San Diego scoring threat and also came up with a fumble recovery.
Harrison has some colorful nicknames. Among them are "Silverback" for his resemblance to the powerful and ferocious mountain gorilla, "Mr. Monday Night" for his incredible performances on that stage and his teammates also refer to him as "Deebo" from the Friday movies.
On Monday, November 5, 2007, Harrison piled up 10 tackles, 2 tackles for losses, 3.5 sacks, 4 forced fumbles, 1 fumble recovery and 1 interception against the Ravens.