League will review Harbaugh-Schwartz confrontation

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That post-game brouhaha between Lions coach Jim Schwartz and 49ers coach Jim Harbaugh has attracted the attention of many people.

It also has attracted the attention of the league office.

NFL spokesman Greg Aiello tells PFT that the incident will be reviewed on Monday.  A key issue, Aiello said, is whether and to what extent there was physical contact.

If so, that’s bad news for Schwartz, who appeared to bump Harbaugh at least once.  Harbaugh also could be in hot water; one of the FOX camera angles seems to show Harbaugh giving Schwartz a push in the back after that exuberant handshake.

Discipline imposed, if any, would likely fall under the personal conduct policy, which prohibits among other things “[v]iolent or threatening behavior among employees, whether in or outside the workplace.”

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108 responses to “League will review Harbaugh-Schwartz confrontation

  1. It’s called a pat on the back, also referred to as ‘good job.” How in the hell does Schwartz think he’s been shoved is just total BS.

  2. As long as we’re talking about Schwartz, Chan Gailey is absolutely coach of the year right now.

    I fully expect the Lions hype train (wow, weird saying that) to land Schwartz the award.

  3. The league office again has blinders on, looking at contact but not looking at a a very UNproffesional , cutless, classless actions by Harbaugh. His raw raw ree kickem in the knee crap was allowed at Stanford but God-del should stop it now.

  4. Harbaugh was jumping and screaming like a college coach, he has to realize where he is now.

    Show a little class, Jim.

  5. Harbough has just become one of my favorite coaches. Shook his hand too hard?? Now that’s funny.

  6. Schwartz acting like he just won the super bowl after every win is ok but just don’t shake his hand too hard when he doesn’t win? he’ll regret those words when he’s labeled as the baby that he is…

  7. I was all for Schwartz after the Dallas game and his shot back at Rob Ryan. If Schwartz walks away, Harbaugh looks like the idiot. Schwartz removed all doubt.

  8. Schwartz acted like the punk that he is. It was a pat on the back, get over yourselves already. Anyone who saw anything other than that is just a Detroit bandwagoner and not looking at reality. Both are excitable, so what, but Schwartz probably felt offended Harbaugh did not stand there and kiss him like everyone in the press is these days. Harbaugh had a reason to be excited, you go on the road and beat an undefeated team in their own place, your playing great, what’s not to like?

  9. Harbaugh was definitely a little hyper with the hand shake/low-fiver/back-slap. And so I can see why Schwartz didn’t like it, but Schwartz went absolutely insane and took things to another level.

    Again, Harbaugh’s “handshake” was rude and inconsiderate, but Schwartz’s reaction was way over the top.

  10. I have a friend that is a college coach and worked with Jm Schwartz. He has said many times that Schwartz is a total D-bag, and that’s his reputation. Apparently Jim Harbaugh thinks the same. Regardless anybody that knows a lick about football know the Lions are a joke team they were going to fall. There last drive of the game, where they totally gave up proves it. A joke like there head coach.

  11. Both coaches are at fault here. Harbaugh for not being a professional at the time of the handshake and Schwartz for flying way off the handle.

  12. I loved how Coach Schwartz told “Goose” on air as the kickoff was about to happen that the 49ers “Are deferring. They’re afraid of our crowd.” I’m surprised the Niners even showed up they were probably so scared of Detroit’s front four as well. Turns out they had nothing to be afraid of- 198 yards rushing & gave up 2 sacks while dishing out 4 on Stafford.

  13. “camera angles seems to show Harbaugh giving Schwartz a push in the back after that exuberant handshake”.
    This insane. As part of his hand shake he patted him on back. Harbaugh, while maybe a bit overly excited, DID NOT PUSH Shwartz. Swartz, however was looking for action and should be fined.

  14. “The Mighty Suh will hand out concussions to everyone and such… unless it’s gameday and the worst oline in the league blocks him, while we still don’t have a Left Tackle or an actual respectable oline to protect mr glass…meow!”

    – smurf kitten fans.

  15. Harbaugh needs to show some class, there is along tradition of acting professionally and shaking hands like grown men after the game – harbaugh acted like a child

  16. People, people relax. This is just an example of two loser franchises not knowing how to react to winning/losing a big game. They will play each other in the wild card round and the winner will lose the next week. No big deal.

  17. 3octaveFart says: Oct 16, 2011 7:39 PM

    Hell, the Ryan brothers would kick the Harbaugh’s asses.


    Either one of the Ryan brothers would kick both of the Harbaugh’s asses at an eating contest.

  18. “I see your Schwartz is as big as mine. Now let’s see how well you handle it…”

  19. I like that Harbaugh is excited about winning, the culture of losing is quickly changing in SF and that is in huge part to the Coach. to get excited after a statement win on the road is Okay, frankly I’d be concerned if he wasn’t thrilled. fine em both, slap em on the wrists and focus on the Game !

  20. Schwartz is a little girl. Waaaaa he shook my hand to haaaard. He pushed me waaaaaaaaaaa. Moommmm he pushed me!!!!!

  21. When Harbaugh threw the challenge flag after the Lions first TD you can see Schwartz say “learn the f##king rules Harbaugh” into his headset. Maybe the animosity goes back a bit.

  22. Schwartz is a total jag off. Where’s your fist pump now, Jimmy? First he cusses and taunts another player then he starts a team brawl. Freaking classless moron.

  23. There are two fouls during the play, both personal fousl, both offsetting, that’s is the en of redulation. Schwartz responded to what Harbaugh said/did. Schwartz is a class act, his sideline antics are during the game, after that its business as usual. Harbaugh showed class in his press conference taking fault, Harbaugh was excited, went a littl over the top, Schwartz overreacted, both were at fault, it’s football get over it. I’m glad it shows the emotion of two previously struggling teams. The NFL should jot fine either coaches…

  24. Btw, live in Detroit and love the lion, know when Detroit is wrong, I feel like both sides were wrong, let them go….

  25. It’s a shame that this will be talked about over what was an great game.

    As far as what happened Harbaugh was a tad hyped up but it wasn’t anything that warranted the reaction from Schwartz.

    Both are emotional guys and it was that type of game where emotions ran high and they spilled over a bit.

    While it’s going to fall on deaf ears I hope the media talks about the actual game rather than a minor incident on the sidelines.

  26. bearsblow says:
    Oct 16, 2011 7:41 PM
    I have a friend that is a college coach and worked with Jm Schwartz. He has said many times that Schwartz is a total D-bag, and that’s his reputation. Apparently Jim Harbaugh thinks the same. Regardless anybody that knows a lick about football know the Lions are a joke team they were going to fall. There last drive of the game, where they totally gave up proves it. A joke like there head coach.

    A joke like your education.

    There, Their, They’re. Learn them.

  27. Better review it 25 times from 10 different camera angles (don’t forget the overhead camera and the blimp shot) and then walk off 15 for improper handshaking. The NO FUN LEAGUE at its absolute best.

  28. LMAO, Schwartz is an idiot. Im just glad nobody had to witness another one of his postgame fist pumps. What a clown, at least the Lion hype will die off for a week. They have not beat a real team yet.

  29. you can see on the video Swartz say something about the rough back slap and Harbaugh turn over his right should and say something nasty because that is when swartz explodes on him.

  30. You would think Schwartz would expect a stonger handshake being a lion and all. It’s not like he was playing Miami you know the one.. (Dead fish) handshake!

  31. Schwartz could have just walked away and Harbaugh would have looked like a total jackass, but he flipped out like a little girl throwing a tantrum. Sure Harbaugh should have been more professional about it, but it was nothing to chase him down the field about. Schwartz looked like a lunatic.

  32. On a serious note. Rivalries are good for business. Left unchecked or with little interference from Goodell this could me the makings of a beautiful moneymaker for all parties involved.

  33. You want to know who else was smug?

    Josh McDaniels…and we all know how that worked out

    After all, I wouldn’t get too excited. All Harbaugh is doing right now is ensuring Alex Smith will be the starting QB for the near future.

  34. Lost in the truly silly dust-up over who is the bigger “D-bag” is the fact that this was a huge game for the 2nd-tier teams that comprise the most easily imagined NFC playoff contingent.

    All things remaining equal, the 49ers now have homefield advantage over the Lions. The Lions aren’t going to overtake the Packers, who appear to be on the verge of a neo-dynasty.

    Again, all things remaining equal, the Lions have potentially guaranteed that they go on the road in the playoffs. They, and apperently their coach, are not mature enough as a team to weather that sort of scenario. Maybe in a couple of years, but not now.

  35. Harbaugh should have shown a little more class. He has always been a punk dating back to his irrelevant QB days. Schwartz should have just punched him in the suck hole instead of whining like a hoe.

  36. All I gotta say is I’ve been reading all the niner haters replies all year. So far were 5-1. We’ve beat some good teams and all the niner haters always credit the other team for playing bad and that’s what I would do if I was a hater!!! So sorry ur team didn’t win or for whatever reason u decided to hate on the niners .Stop being haters. Didn’t u hear hating is bad! Lol. Nuff said ok bye

  37. It must run in the family for the Harbaughs. Brother John is frequently a sore loser/winner during the customary midfield meeting of the coaches.

  38. Harbaugh was a Raider (Once a Raider, always a Raider) BUT you have to learn to control yourself. Your the coach. You start acting like that, next thing you know your players start loosing it too. Remember Vernon Davis is one play from actin a fool again.

  39. Have any of you seen the usual post game look of a Lions coach? Deer in the headlight look, flabbergasted, no explanation, soul taken away, empty eyes showing the sign of hopeless defeat while they ramble on about watching film and staying the course even though they’re headed for the coaching graveyard.

    That’s not Schwartz and he’s fighting the dreaded effects of Lionization. If that means he throws a few punches and maybe lights a fire under his team in the process, so be it. He showed more fight than his whole team did…hence, why they lost in the first place.

  40. Lions lost because the 49ers were better . U want to disagree look at the score. The niners are 3-0 on the road they wanted it more so stop making excuses for your sorry team . Be bigger than the coach was and don’t be a sore loser!

  41. schwartz was hoopin & hollarin after the lions beat the vikings. Frazier didn’t play the bitch like schwartz. crybaby.

  42. Harbaugh needs to grow the Hell up. This is professional ball, not college and he needs to show respect. Coming at Schwartz, with a major hand slap shake is BS. Be a man, not a college idiot and shake the losing coach’s hand, wish him well and go head butt your players and celebrate.

    Totally Bush league!

    I am now a SF hater for this immature crap.

  43. Like I said two weeks a go, a HC cannot lose his cool and call an opposing player a MF. Schwartz has no class, what so ever. It bit him the a*s today.

    Chew on it Schwartz!


  44. After watching the replay a few times, both were guilty. (I’m not a fan of either team.)

    Hippety-Hoppity Harbaugh is guilty–albeit unintentionally— for being very “insensitive” in the excitement of the moment, not showing more “reserve” when approaching and shaking Schwartz’s hand. (Yet the pat on the back after the handshake was not hard, as if he “pushed” Schwartz really hard, as Schwartz seems to be suggesting.)

    Sore loser Schwartz is guilty–and intentionally so–for letting Harbaugh’s insensitivity get the best of him as he then ran after Harbaugh down the field, and bumping into him at least once to give him a piece of his mind.

    Hence, while Harbaugh’s actions were wrong, being insensitive, Schwartz’s responding actions were worse given they were intentional. Hopefully both of them will get a fine, although if only one gets a fine, it should be Schwartz.

    Nevertheless, the final twist to this is that now that Harbaugh has the time to look back and reflect on what he did, he should be willing to personally and publicly apologize to Schwartz. The fact that he is currently unwilling to do so makes him look like an arse. Should he have a change of mind and apologize to Schwartz, then the ball is back in Schwartz’s court, and he should likewise then apologize in return.

    But the worse part about this whole thing would not be the post-game exchanges on the field, but if now, after the fact, neither of them is willing to apologize, as currently seems to be the case. This is the worst part about this whole thing since then what we have here is two grown men who not only acted like children, but even though they both should realize it by now, are still unwilling to grow up, be men, admit their mistakes, and apologize to one another for what they each did.

    It’s one thing to “mess up”, but it’s even worse to not “fess up”.

    Hence, if Harbaugh and Schwartz, who are both guilty in their own ways, do not mutually apologize to one another, they will have set a very bad example out of all of this, and have no one to blame but themselves.

  45. 4evrnyt says:
    “Oct 16, 2011 7:19 PM
    It’s called a pat on the back, also referred to as ‘good job.” How in the hell does Schwartz think he’s been shoved is just total BS.”

    Depends on who does that to me. If my friend does that to me after OUR team wins the superbowl no problem.

    The opposing coach does that? Punched in the face.

  46. A famous man advised you should treat everyone like a gentleman. Not because THEY are, but because YOU are.

    What about it, coaches? Hard to decipher? Or does the concept of being a gentleman seem out of your league?

  47. They’ll probably both be fined…. but neither should. No real punches were thrown. Harbaugh went a little overboard and should maybe act like he’s won a game before.

  48. Simple rule:

    If you don’t like ungracious winners, don’t lose.

    But beyond that, Schwartz is a whiney crybaby. You lose, you lose. Man up and don’t over-react when someone has just come into one of the toughest stadiums to play and kicked a 5-0 team’s butt…

  49. What a bunch of whiny sad sacks criticizing Harbaugh. Who cares if he was excited that they won – I’d rather have that than a robo-like reaction from than most coaches have. He deserves to be pumped right now as that was a huge win and most people seem to be forgetting that.

    Nines won, Loins lost. Awesome game.

  50. @3octavefart . Ur right the Ryan brothers would demolish the Harbaughs, if they were a big Mac meal w/ cheese.

  51. Harbaugh was too excitable but he did not SHOVE Schwartz. That is a joke and Schwartz will never convince anyone that is what happened.

    Harbaugh came out and said that was his fault and took the heat for being to excited, so it’s up to Schwartz to let it go.

    And no chance the league will fine either of them.

    Bigger story is the Niners knocked off the unbeaten Lions on the road. No sense in manufacturing stories.

  52. Move over Jets and Cowboys, there’s a new Rex and Rob in town.

    I guess the same could be said about Todd Haley and Denver’s Hurricane Josh.

  53. Direct quote from Matt Barrows at the Bee:

    “Harbaugh said it was his fault. “I was just really fired up,” he said. “I shook his hand too hard. … That was on me.” Harbaugh said he caught up with Schwartz later in the tunnel and told Schwartz that he, Harbaugh, shouldn’t have shaken Shawartz’s hand like that.”

    In other words, Harabugh has already taken fault and apologized directly to Schwartz.

    Any complaining at this point exposes Schwartz as a candy ass for not letting it go.

  54. @Nevis …

    Dude … forget Matt Barrows. The video of Harbaugh making that comment is in the upper right corner of this PFT page. Why don’t you watch it? Harbaugh is being super sarcastic about how he must have shaken Schwartz’s hand too hard. Come on 🙄

  55. @ Nevis: While I agree, I think it is also think it is kind of a backhanded “apology”. Think about it; Harbaugh is essentially taking the blame for Schwartz not being able to stand a hard (man’s?) handshake.

    That said, if you look at my earlier comment, this whole “handshakegate” obscures the fact that the Lions have put themselves in a playoff bind in terms of seeding, all things remaining equal.

    This might be why JS is so pissy about the affair.

  56. This is football Swartz, not golf. Emotion comes with the territory. Try winning a big one. Your team quit late in the game. Bad attitude?

  57. Schwartz should get over it. I suppose all those fist pumps on the field after beating other teams is supposed to be overlooked.
    Yes, Harbaugh acted pretty classless, that’s no excuse. I see that Schwartz saw someone who acts just like him and he hated being treated that way. Maybe Jim should take a hint from this? Doubt it will happen. What he did in chasing down Harbaugh made a bush league move look even more bush league.
    Goodell will throw some fines on both sides.

  58. I love how every time the Niners win one, it just demonstrates that the team they beat wasn’t that good. It couldn’t possibly be that the Niners have gotten good. It couldn’t possibly be that they’re loaded up with high draft choices and great athletes and all they needed was good coaching and good schemes.

  59. stylers69 says:
    Oct 16, 2011 8:56 PM
    Harbaugh needs to grow the Hell up. This is professional ball, not college and he needs to show respect. Coming at Schwartz, with a major hand slap shake is BS. Be a man, not a college idiot and shake the losing coach’s hand, wish him well and go head butt your players and celebrate.

    Totally Bush league!

    I am now a SF hater for this immature crap.

     12 24 

    I officially couldn’t care less. Schwartz has been a smug punk all week long in the press with his backhanded swipes at the 9ers organization. The hers coaching staff were very respectful all week long. Schwartz looks like a little girl here as he should.

  60. The NFL should package and sell this stuff. This is exactly what they want. Now they have two coaches that have a grudge against each other. It takes a lot of pressure off of the other shenanigans going on.

  61. They were both wrong. I understand Harbaugh being all jazzed up from a win on a undefeated team but going hard like that is uncalled for. at the same time if i was Schwartz, I would have popped him right there at the 50. Harbaugh knew what he was doing but Schwartz shouldn’t have chased him down like that.

  62. Harbaugh’s a punk.

    Has been since he played and cried like a little girl.

    He basically punched Schwartz in the back with an exaggerated “man” congrats.

    I hope someone rolls up on him on the sideline and takes him out.

    What a POS.

  63. All I care about is that the 49ers are relevant again. It is GREAT for the league that the premiere West Coast franchise in NFL history is now forcing the East Cost media to actually pay attention to football in the Pacific time zone. God knows we could do with less Jets and Cowboys coverage.

    As for the scuffle, it was funny to see Schwartz get butt-hurt about an “obscenity” when you could hear him say “Learn the f-ing rules, Harbaugh” on that challenged TD play. Not to mention I have seen him act exuberantly after wins, fist pump like an idiot and taunt and swear at opposing players. What a clown. Hope he likes his serving of humble pie.

  64. @dmobey really punched him in the back. Haha. U must be a female to think that was a punch in the back. Schwartz is a d bag. Running around like a fool. Nobody says anything when he runs around pumping his fist like he won a superbowl screaming ” boom” everytime he wins. Now i really dont like this guy. Soar loser.

  65. I instantly hate jim harbaugh and I love Michigan but as a rookie head coach you have proven NOTHING have some class and be civil.That bein said good defense played by the niners and you have my respect for now…

  66. melikefootball, they were both classless. Schwartz shouldn’t have overreacted like he did either.

  67. kiefs85,

    Shut the hell up. The Niners dominated for 2 decades. Just because you’re too ignorant to care about anything before you were born, doesn’t make them a loser franchise.

  68. “He basically punched Schwartz in the back…”

    You call that a punch? That was pat on the back that even my 7 year old wouldn’t think as too rough.

    While Schwartz has done a good job with the Lions, he certainly handled this situation like a spoiled child. He certainly has no business chiding anyone about protocol or professional demeanor.

  69. Hey lions fans, Jim will have a whole bye week to work on his handshake next week, basking in the glory of beating a undefeated team.. while you can marinate on your team and HC getting PUNKED!

  70. The Harbaughs are punks – both of ‘em.
    Neither would last two minutes in a bar fight
    Uh, both were D1A college quarterbacks and one was a starting NFL QB.

    My money is definitely on them in a bar fight.

    Welcome back to earth, Detroit.

    Just kidding, you’re still delusional.

  71. Is this seriously going to be an issue? I see all these talking heads on the Mothership talking about how Harbaugh could lose the locker room because he couldnt stay in control. Really? They just went into Detroit and won a huge game, as week 6 games go. I WANT my HC to be fired up after a win like that.
    There was no slap. And Lions fans, of course, will say “watch the video”. I couldnt really care much less about either team. So Im not too far in the forest to see the trees. Look at the video in Green Bay when Fourve comes running onto the sidelines after scoring a TD and grabs Rodgers’ hand and says “put’er in the ole vice” and prolly squeezes the life out of Rodgers’ hand.
    Nothing should be done to Harbaugh, but in a league where you cant even fart after scoring a TD anymore, the league will surely put the clamps on any type of fun or celebration of any kind. This IS the No Fun Legue, ya know.

  72. Class has many faces. And none of them belong to Harbaugh or Schwartz. All we need now is for the Ryan twins to get into an Australian belly bumping contest.

  73. They both showed a lack of class, it started with Harbaugh though.

    This isn’t kiddie ball, Jim.

  74. It was bush league on both coaches parts. How cool would it have been if they hugged and wished each other well saying; “Well, it’s been better for both our teams than it has been for a few years, eh” It was more like two coaches whose teams havent won for a long time, and they were acting like it..on the other hand, maybe this may spark a mini-rivalry…both teams were feisty and getting after it.

    Kudos to Harbaugh…he’s coached them up and especially Alex Smith..who , of course imploded with a pick later … and Detroit had a shot on the last drive…..where was the Hail Mary to Megatron? Lions appeared too predictable….

  75. I’d rather have a coach that finally cares about winning games, even if he cares too much.

    Previously, the best Lions coach during my lifetime was Wayne Fontes, so frankly, I don’t mind Schwartz’s “lack of class”.

  76. an over-exuberant fist pump on your sideline is not the same thing as an opposing coach vehemently celebrating in your face.

    They were both wrong, but I love the emotion in both coaches!

    And 9’ers fans…quit acting like you ‘beat down’ the Lions. You won a close, defensive game. Your team scored when you needed them to! Refs were terrible for both teams, but I am not making excuses, we couldn’t score when we needed. Bad passes, dropped balls. I hope it was a wake-up call.

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