Marvin Lewis wishes Bengals had used James Harrison more


Linebacker James Harrison’s tenure with the Cincinnati Bengals lasted just one season as the team elected to release Harrison on March 13.

Harrison had his least productive season, statistically, since becoming a regular starter for the Pittsburgh Steelers in 2007. Harrison made 10 starts in 15 games for the Bengals last season and compiled just 30 tackles with two sacks and an interception.

Bengals head coach Marvin Lewis wishes they had found ways to utilize Harrison more last season.

“I wish we could have got him on the field more often. I feel bad about (that),” Lewis said, in an interview with Alex Marvez and Adam Caplan on Sirius XM NFL Radio. “I thought we’d have an opportunity to really get him out there more often but the way offense dictated to us, we didn’t get that chance very often.”

Lewis said the Bengals feel confident about the potential of linebackers Emmanuel Lamur and Jayson DiManche, which was part of the reason the team felt comfortable moving on from Harrison. But Lewis still speaks highly of Harrison’s time in Cincinnati and what he brought to the locker room as well as the field.

“James was a tremendous role model and example of how you play the game. He’s a great man. He did a great job for us this last year. He really helped us immensely, helped us win the division. He made critical plays at critical moments.”

Harrison remains a free agent. He wants to return to the Steelers and the two sides appear to have mutual interest over a possible reunion. Harrison played his first 10 seasons in Pittsburgh.


21 responses to “Marvin Lewis wishes Bengals had used James Harrison more

  1. Based on Harrison’s statistics in a very limited role, Harrison graded out as the second best linebacker on the Bengals roster last season. He was second only to Burfect.

    The fact Marvin didn’t use him more might help explain why he’s never won a playoff game.

  2. How does Marvin Lewis still have a job–he is the definition of a mediocre head coach. He has been the Bengals coach for 11 years and hasn’t even won a playoff game.

  3. I thought we’d have an opportunity to really get him out there more often but the way offense dictated to us, we didn’t get that chance very often.”- mediocre marv

    that quote is exactly why the bengals haven’t won a playoff game. lewis always lets the other team dictate. once in awhile you force the other team to adapt to what your doing… he gets up by 10 in the 3rd quarter and he hangs on, BJGE right and BJGE left and punt and hope the D hangs on. you need to punish a team once in a orange moon, then they have something to recall during the playoffs when the chargers are force feeding the will down our throats!!!!

  4. How many picks did Dalton throw? There were SO many times that Marvin could of had James on the filed with chances to utilize his skills.

  5. James Harrison decline (like the steelers) began immediately after federal authorities indicted pittsburgh steelers team doctor dr. richard rydze for illegal distribution of anabolic steroids and human growth hormone.

  6. I wish the Bengals would use Marvin less. Like 4 years ago less. Can’t believe he’s still here. It’s the NFL. Mediocrity doesn’t fly in most places.

  7. Always refreshing to see a coach have nice words to say about a player. While James Harrison has a not-so-nice reputation, he’s surely a good teammate.

    He was my favorite on Hard Knocks and was clearly a guy that was well respected in the locker room. Would love to see him play his final season with the Pittsburgh Steelers.

  8. Harrison has always been a team player. The guy played through back injuries for the Steelers that no player should have ever played through. The guy could take on a 300+ pound tackle and still bring down the running back while engaged. I still remember when he broke his eye socket on a head butt from a Houston Texan on a block and still made the tackle downfield afterwards. It is too bad that his career did not take off until he was almost 30.

  9. “I thought we’d have an opportunity to really get him out there more often but the way offense dictated to us, we didn’t get that chance very often.”

    -_- Marvin. Don’t be dictated. Dictate other teams. You wonder why you lose in the playoffs.

  10. Stil confused why the head coach is issuing a statement about wishing a recently released player played more…you are the head coach Mr. Lewis.

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