A collective sigh of relief was heard across Steeler Nation earlier today as news of James Harrison’s contract extension spread. Sure, Harrison was still under contract for one more season, but now the drama of playing out his last year with out an extension has been avoided.
The six year $51M contract is the largest ever for a Steelers defensive player. It blew away my prediction, “More than five years at $40M with $9M guaranteed would be surprising.”
Throw in the $20M signing bonus and Mr. Harrison should be one happy outside linebacker. The man earned it; he so far outplayed his contract the last two seasons, the Steelers can feel happy even if Harrison’s productivity declines after a few more campaigns. Some say he’s a young 31 considering the limited amount of play early in his career. That’s true. But in four years he’ll be 35 (long in the tooth for a position that depends on explosiveness) with two remaining on his contract.
Those are considerations for another time, though. The Steelers had to keep Harrison. It sends a positive message to the other players and destroys the trollish message board notion that !!!THEM CHEEP AZZ RONNEYS WONT SING NOBODYS!!1!1!