NFL reduces Harrison's fine for hit on Massaquoi
By Scott Brown
Published: Friday, December 31, 2010
The NFL put $25,000 back into James Harrison's bank account.
The Steelers outside linebacker had a $75,000 fine for a flagrant hit on a defenseless receiver reduced to $50,000.
Harrison had lost an earlier appeal of the fine for his hit on Browns receiver Mohamed Massaquoi on Oct. 17.
Appeals officer Ted Cottrell reviewed that appeal after reducing the fines of Patriots safety Brandon Meriweather and Falcons cornerback Dunta Robinson for similar infractions.
"We're grateful that they did this," said Bill Parise, Harrison's agent. "We got a Pro Bowl and a fine reduction in the same week."
The NFL said in a statement that Cottrell recommended reducing Harrison's fine to Roger Goodell and that the commissioner "fully supported the decision."
According to the statement, "Cottrell said he reduced the fines because the players said they understood the rules and have made efforts to adjust their techniques to play with the rules that protect player safety."
Harrison has been fined four times this season for a total of $100,000 and twice since the Massaquoi hit.
Harrison was docked $20,000 for drilling Drew Brees in the back after the Saints quarterback threw a pass. Harrison, a four-time Pro Bowler, was docked $25,000 for hitting Ryan Fitzpatrick while the Bills quarterback was in what the NFL considered a defenseless position.
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"I appreciate him for his kind words, and I definitely think he should have been on there, too. We had a lot of players that have played well throughout the season and kind of deserve to go. We all know the politics of being a Pro Bowl player and making the Pro Bowl."
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