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Harrison’s talks with Bengals “not going well”

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What seemed like a natural fit might not be coming together quite as smoothly as expected.

According to Mike Garafolo of USA Today, negotiations between linebacker James Harrison and the Bengals are “not going well,” and not much progress has been made.

It looked like a deal was close earlier this week, but close might have meant 95 percent.

Harrison needs a gig after being cut by the Steelers in lieu of a pay cut he should have taken, and he was already stood up by the Ravens after they found a younger alternative in Elvis Dumervil. So if the Bengals deal falls through, he’ll either have to beg the Browns for a chance, or leave the division he’s always known.

The Bengals have also talked to veteran Karlos Dansby, so they have most of the leverage in this deal. But there’s an understandable draw for the former Steelers star, at least among Bengals players.

“He hates the Steelers now, and that’s somebody we need on our side,” defensive end Carlos Dunlap said.

Of course, it appears he’s going to have to come to peace with the Bengals terms if he wants a chance to stick it to his old team.

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50 Responses to “Harrison’s talks with Bengals “not going well””
  1. steelbydesign says: Apr 16, 2013 3:32 PM

    The Bengals must REALLY be lowballing him. I’d have thought he’d jump at any half decent contract at this point.

  2. bigbenownsthenfl says: Apr 16, 2013 3:33 PM

    ya right like hes going to “stick it to the steelers” as this has unfolded from what I can see is the steelers “stuck it to james” he gambled and lost.. shocking nobody want to pay a 37 yr old with a history of injuries. this is my shocked face :O

  3. dickson29 says: Apr 16, 2013 3:38 PM

    “not going well”,,,,,,,,,,shocker!

  4. Steeley McBeam says: Apr 16, 2013 3:39 PM

    It has become crystal clear that the Steelers moving on was the right thing to do.

    If what Dunlap says is true, how quickly Harrison has forgotten that the Steelers were the only team to put up with him for the first 5 years of his career and made him a Super Bowl winning Pro Bowler.

  5. Andrew Bailey says: Apr 16, 2013 3:40 PM

    I’d take Dansby over Harrison 100 times out of 100.

  6. doe22us says: Apr 16, 2013 3:41 PM

    He wants too much $$$ and is still in denial anyhow, to each his own.

  7. morganstan100 says: Apr 16, 2013 3:42 PM

    Steelers never should have let him go. He helped them squeak by to win two Superbowls they should have lost and now they reward him by kicking him out on the street. This team has neither heart nor brains. Ravens know better. That’s why they’re Superbowl Champs.

  8. shoesfinest says: Apr 16, 2013 3:43 PM

    Typical Bengals…too cheap to pay what quality players are worth. James as a Bengals fan I wouldn’t expect you to play for this penny pinching owner.

  9. jcioffi1485 says: Apr 16, 2013 3:45 PM

    Is anybody really surprised? C’mon, do you really see Harrison wearing our pajamas?

    James Harrison is doing what ANY free agent does to my Bengals. He’s using them for an offer sheet to take to NE, NO, Giants or the Broncos.

    Unless you’re unemployable or a fat slob like Sam Adams was at the end of his career, nobody willfully signs with the Bengals. Re-run the draft day tape on AJ Green. You would have thought the judge just sent him away for life in prison.

  10. bobzilla1001 says: Apr 16, 2013 3:51 PM

    The reason Harrison isn’t “begging” anyone for a job might be because he considered retirement during the 2010 season. His teammates and coaches coaxed him into changing his mind.
    It’s quite possible that if he was ready to walk then, he might be willing to walk now.

    The Steelers made Harrison a Super Bowl-winning Pro Bowler?
    Today must be “Dumb Day.”

  11. tiggerblood says: Apr 16, 2013 3:57 PM

    The Bengals have the most cap room and they’re still low balling guys, amazing it makes me wonder if they ever heard of incentives or are the players to scared they won’t live up to them? This deal should get done does he think he’s worth $5 million because he’s not and good luck trying to find it. I do like him at 3-4 million so I believe this one reeks of the cheapness of Mike Brown. So frustrating being a bungles fan….

  12. oldschoolomen says: Apr 16, 2013 4:04 PM

    I wouldn’t give Harrison a dime more than what the Raven’s paid McClain. 1 year, 700K. He’s, old, he hasn’t been healthy, he’s a liability with his history of helmet-to-helmet contact, and he’s a 3-4 OLB in a 4-3 defense. If he won’t take it, they don’t need him. Sign Dansby already.

  13. melkipershero says: Apr 16, 2013 4:05 PM

    The Bengals won’t over pay for an over the hill LB and they’re the bad guys here? I’d say James is, because he has very few options.

  14. DonRSD says: Apr 16, 2013 4:11 PM

    Harrison = Neanderthal.

  15. melkipershero says: Apr 16, 2013 4:14 PM

    I’ve been wondering why a team switching to a 3-4 like Philly or New Orleans doesn’t take a shot at him. Guess it’s his contract demands.

  16. nomoreseasontix says: Apr 16, 2013 4:19 PM

    The impasse is simple:
    He thinks he’s worth multi-millions. They don’t.
    I’ll bet he ends up signing a very low, incentive laden contract after the draft.

  17. crownofthehelmet says: Apr 16, 2013 4:29 PM

    Judging by that picture, I’m sure most of his conversations do not go well.

  18. modellforprez says: Apr 16, 2013 4:31 PM

    He hates the steelers or you hate the steelers and just wanna run your mouth cause we TOOK the ring off your girly fingers. of course he is gonna act like he “hates” the steelers they cut him and wont give in to him. but he is not what he was he gets hurt alot now and cannot stay on the field. i know harrison he might get busy on the field but off of it he is softer than baby bum. and you think the steeler coaches will let harrison get at Ben their hundred million dollar Q.B are you crazy. Max protect harrison gets Nada

  19. mackcarrington says: Apr 16, 2013 4:38 PM

    Didn’t this guy slap the mother of his child upside her head a couple of years ago? Yeah, I know it has nothing to do with football, but it shows what this guy is made of.

  20. geefan1 says: Apr 16, 2013 4:44 PM

    Bengals FO types better be careful in those meetings that
    He doesn’t head butt you if he doesn’t like what he hears.

  21. oldway9 says: Apr 16, 2013 4:44 PM

    Harrison = Dirtiest NFL player in the game

  22. crownofthehelmet says: Apr 16, 2013 4:47 PM

    After the coaches watched JH get swallowed up every day in practice by back-up O-line, they would welcome the move to the Bengals.

    1) he would be ineffective as pass-rusher and a liability in coverage, and 2) he will NEVER get a defensive holding call. That won’t change regardless who he plays for.

  23. crownofthehelmet says: Apr 16, 2013 4:48 PM

    *holding called against him

  24. joemammy says: Apr 16, 2013 4:56 PM

    Cheap-shots don’t come cheap, do they, James?

  25. bearclaw69 says: Apr 16, 2013 4:58 PM

    “He hates the Steelers now, and that’s somebody we need on our side,” defensive end Carlos Dunlap said. Yes, that makes total sense. Here a professional football team paid this guy MILLIONS of dollars over several years while he was in their employ, but because they wouldn’t keep paying him that ridiculous salary and wanted him to play for fewer MILLIONS, he now hates them. This ingrate should be sacking groceries for minimum wage. Maybe he’d hate the grocery store.

  26. dashrendar1 says: Apr 16, 2013 5:00 PM

    2 years 6 mil plus incentives. Take it or leave it. I’d rather have Dansby anyway he isnt one-dimensional like Harrison is.

  27. mogogo1 says: Apr 16, 2013 5:06 PM

    “It looked like a deal was close earlier this week, but close might have meant 95 percent.”

    Seems like the writer has gotten the words “close” and “completed” confused. Because if 95% doesn’t qualify as “close” exactly what would?

  28. t8ertot says: Apr 16, 2013 5:11 PM

    I’d rather have Dansby but Harrison would have been nice. As a Bengals fan there’s nothing sweeter than sticking it to the Steelers

  29. ajgreenshands says: Apr 16, 2013 5:21 PM

    The Bengals are NOT going to over-pay this guy…. and they shouldn’t.

  30. joewilliesshnoz says: Apr 16, 2013 5:53 PM

    One of the few things that Pgh. Did right this year.

  31. mazblast says: Apr 16, 2013 6:39 PM

    t8ertot says: Apr 16, 2013 5:11 PM

    I’d rather have Dansby but Harrison would have been nice. As a Bengals fan there’s nothing sweeter than sticking it to the Steelers
    Oh yeah, the Bagels have really stuck it to the Steelers over the years. 6 vs. 0. Until your team wins even ONE Super Bowl, talk to the hand, man.

    It must really stink to be a fan of a franchise that thinks simply making the playoffs is a cause for massive celebration. How long have the guys from “The Jungle” gone without a playoff win? 22 YEARS? There are players in the league who were born since the Bugles last won one playoff game, and you’re talking trash about the STEELERS?

    Getting back to the subject–There’s no way anyone will pay Harrison what he thinks he’s worth, and no way Mikey Brown will pay anyone what they’re actually worth.

  32. natijim235 says: Apr 16, 2013 8:06 PM

    as a bengal fan nothing shocks us….bet mikey boy can’t sign harrison or dansby….pathetic!

  33. t8ertot says: Apr 16, 2013 8:20 PM

    @ Maznlast:

    When did you jump on the terrible towel bandwagon? Better yet, how was did last year’s second game against the Bengals go? Oh yeah, that’s right. The Bengals beat your team on their field to knock them out of the playoffs. Typical Steeler fan, blabbing about 6 rings. The future of your franchise looks bleak at best. Why are you on the Bengals jock strap anyway? Sore loser I guess

  34. stillers35 says: Apr 16, 2013 8:25 PM

    Morganstan- Hmm kicked him out after he helped win them a Super Bowl? Sounds familiar. I mean Boldin won the Rats a ring and got Flacco that ridiculous contract and was let go. You are king hypocrite

  35. enoughofthatalready says: Apr 16, 2013 8:43 PM

    morganstan100 says:Apr 16, 2013 3:42 PM

    Steelers never should have let him go. He helped them squeak by to win two Superbowls they should have lost and now they reward him by kicking him out on the street. This team has neither heart nor brains. Ravens know better. That’s why they’re Superbowl Champs.

    You are kidding, right? Squeak by 2 Super Bowls? A 10 point win and a 4 point win. If the Steelers squeaked, the Ravens inched.

    My favorite game of James Harrison was a 38-7 Sunday night thrashing of the Ravens about 5 years ago where Ben threw 5 TDs by halftime. Harrison had 3 sacks, 2 forced fumbles, an INT, and he absolutely plastered a Raven on a punt return.

  36. enoughofthatalready says: Apr 16, 2013 8:46 PM

    t8ertot says: Apr 16, 2013 5:11 PM

    I’d rather have Dansby but Harrison would have been nice. As a Bengals fan there’s nothing sweeter than sticking it to the Steelers

    How would the Bengals signing Harrison stick it to the Steelers? The Steelers cut Harrison. It is not like Harrison was up for free agency and the Bengals jumped in with an offer. Typical Ohio thinking…or lack thereof.

    BTW, with or without Harrison, I believe that the Bengals will run away with the AFC North this year.

  37. csilojohnson says: Apr 16, 2013 8:53 PM

    If it wasnt for the Steelers taking a chance on him. Despite his inability to learn a system. James would be flipping burgers. He shouldve taken the pay cut.

  38. jpietrefesa says: Apr 16, 2013 9:30 PM

    “morganstan100 says:
    Apr 16, 2013 3:42 PM
    Steelers never should have let him go. He helped them squeak by to win two Superbowls they should have lost and now they reward him by kicking him out on the street. This team has neither heart nor brains. Ravens know better. That’s why they’re Superbowl Champs.”

    The year that the Steelers won Super Bowl XL James Harrison had a total of 3 sacks. Joey Porter was still the starting ROLB. You should actually watch football so that you don’t make a fool of yourself.

    Kicking him out on the street? The offer the Steelers made him is better than any that he has gotten in free agency.

  39. morganstan100 says: Apr 16, 2013 9:33 PM

    Im glad your favorite game was six years ago. Have you watched any games since the invention of color TV? There was a pretty good one in 2011 when Joe “Montana” Flacco shredded your weak secondary to the tune of 35-7. Oh, you also got swept that year and eventually Tim Tebow sent you packing. Last year, there were some good games, but my favorites were in the post season. Steelers not invited, unfortunately. So, until you win another Superbowl, please talk to the hand. I only converse with champions.

  40. ialwayswantedtobeabanker says: Apr 16, 2013 9:47 PM

    James Harrison was a legend with the Steelers, and I think he can still bring it for another 2 season. Debo trains like a madman, and plays like a “MAD” man.

    It would shock me if it went down, but it would be awesome to see all our minds get blown if the Steelers reconsidered. The players WANT him. Many of us in Steeler Nation WANT him. The market is soft. Worilds and Carter are NOT the answer.

    A man can hope, right?

  41. steel2372 says: Apr 16, 2013 10:43 PM

    I agree ialwayswantedtobeabanker. I would love to see the Steelers reconsider. I also agree he probably has two good season left. He is exactly what we need that worilds and carter just does not have.

    My greatest memory of James was against the Ravens. He shot through that weak Ravens line and he picked up Flacco and just slammed him down with authority. Flacco looked around as if to say What was that? lol. It made top 5 James Harrison hits list. No cheap shot either and beautiful sack. Steelers nation will miss you James thank you for the memories

  42. morganstan100 says: Apr 16, 2013 10:50 PM

    Bill Leavey says Steelers never should have won Superbowl XL because of the bad calls. I was watching and I fully agree. Poor Harrison came groveling back to your genius FO and they told him to stuff it. Then they went and blew all their salary cap space chasing around Bill Belichick. Face it, you’re talking to a Ravens fan. We know football and what it takes to be Champions of the World.

  43. tedmurph says: Apr 16, 2013 10:58 PM

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    thesteelers says:Apr 16, 2013 9:36 PM

    He would rather have six rings.


    Hope this representitive of steeler nation makes you all proud.

  44. crownofthehelmet says: Apr 16, 2013 11:58 PM


    You know what’s bleak? The future of someone dumb enough to talk smack with the current O-fer playoff streak you’ve got going.

    Or someone so delusional to think the Bengals had any hand in the Steelers 2012 demise. E Sand’s fumbles, A Brown’s mental-collapse-game, and 2 Ben ints are what kept the playoffs out of reach. The Bengals were simply there, merely an afterthought. Congrats on making he playoffs though, it’s always an honor being nominated.

  45. blackngold4life says: Apr 17, 2013 12:13 AM

    Harrison is a 3-4 Guy that’s not good in space..he’s excellent in backside pursuit but undersized to be ask to set the edge repeatedly No good for a 4-3 defense..Lewis is just tryna stick it to the Steelers..No other reason. Funny how he’d be willing to learn a whole new system rather then take a 30% paycut and possibly get extended for a year.If this dosent work I wouldn’t be surprised to see him back in The Burgh after June 2nd when Colons 5m kicks in. FOR UNDER 3M

  46. tedmurph says: Apr 17, 2013 12:32 AM

    The Bengals are better than the steelers right now. They’re on the way up, passing the steelers on the way down. You’re just gonna have to accept it(and feel lucky the Bengals won’t spend any money).

  47. footballfan says: Apr 17, 2013 9:12 AM

    I have a feeling that if this falls through and Harrison is still available after the draft that he will sign with the Steelers again. Find it hard to believe they offered the pay cut at first and then decided they didn’t want to sign him. I am sure they understood how the market was going to be for him and decided to let him learn a little lesson after not taking the pay cut.

  48. morganstan100 says: Apr 17, 2013 1:26 PM

    Dear Profootballtalk,
    Any chance you could find someting positive to post about the Steelers? We know how BB tricked their FO into blowing its salary wad, how no one is giving them a chance of busting .500, how they need help at every position, how Sanders doesn’t even want to play for them anymore, and how they turned Harrison out on the street — but is there any good news at all for this team? Yikes!

  49. blackngold4life says: Apr 17, 2013 2:37 PM

    ↑↑ Yeah Belichk really “trickd” the Steelers..hes just that smart and devious that’s the most REDICULOUS thing I’ve ever heard. I guess that’s the whole point of RFA to get “Trickd” into resigning your own player for more $ Even if we don’t extend Sanders 2.5m is worth the years RENTAL..

  50. jody46 says: Apr 18, 2013 5:51 AM

    I am a die hard Bengals fan for 40 years, and that is saying a lot since they usually stink but they will always be my favorite team and I will always root for them. I don’t want harrison, when he played the bengals he was one of the dirtiest players in the league. I hope they don’t take him. I don’t care how good he plays. He is unsportsman like. I am glad the talks are going bad!!!

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