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Tuesday, October 19, 2010
Harris: Fines wrong 'on so many levels'

By Kevin Seifert

Those of you who follow Chicago Bears safety Chris Harris on Twitter (@ChrisHarrisNFL) know he has spent part of Tuesday intelligently and forcefully arguing against the NFL's decision to re-emphasize its rules regarding hits to the head and neck area. Much of the discussion came before news broke that three players would be fined a combined $175,000 for such hits during Sunday's games.

Harris just tweeted that fines on the Pittsburgh Steelers' James Harrison and the Atlanta Falcons' Dunta Robinson are "so wrong on so many levels." Below, I've tried to arrange his earlier tweets to give you a sense of what a smart NFL player is saying about this turn of events.
I'm all for player safety. This is a violent barbaric sport. You have a split second to make decisions when making a hit, as a DB my job is

To make the play or cause a fumble. U can't half [way] a tackle n this league bc players like adrien peterson,josh cribbs,aquan boldin will

Break those tackles. Its a fine line. That's part of the sport n u knew that when u signed that contract to play football.

I guarantee u Dick Butkus,Mike Singletary, Richard Dent,Doug Plank,Otis Wilson didn't think twice when hittin someone but NFL want us to now

No one intentionally tries to hit illegally (helmet to helmet) its just part of the game. The reason u see a lot of guys getting hurt now as

Opposed to back n the day is bc its a diff breed of athletes now. Guys r a lot stronger and faster which creates higher impact hits.

Ur not supposed to be 250lbs n be able to run a 4.3 but that's what ur dealing with that u didn't have back n the day therefore the velocity

And impact these guys are hitting with is unbelievable and of course dangerous. Its a damn Gladiator mentality. #sorry

I feel the NFL is singling out defensive players. What about the running backs who are running towards me then lower their heads at contact

Will they get suspended as well?

Think about the Brandon Jacobs n Marion Barbers n Adrien Petersons. They r physical runners who lower their heads n try to run u over to get

That extra yard or first down. That's inviting helmet to helmet contact. There is no way u can get from it in this league ....point blank

I'll be fascinated to see whether these big fines, and the threat of future suspensions, will actually impact the way the game is played. Violence is both the best friend and enemy of the NFL, and has been for many years. It was exactly 50 years ago, in fact, when Chuck Bednarik knocked out Frank Gifford during a game. Gifford was hospitalized with a concussion and didn't play again until 1962.

I agree with Harris. This game is the closet thing to gladiators that we have in modern mainstream sports. Can the NFL walk a line and ask players to be less violent? Isn't it all or nothing?