Harbaugh wanted to wipe Brooks’ blood on his cheek

Chris Chase

A high-five. A pat on the rear. Maybe one of those mid-air hip-checks if they're feeling saucy enough. That's the way a head coach usually celebrates big moments with his players. Not Jim Harbaugh, though. No, Jim Harbaugh wants to celebrate with blood.

San Francisco 49ers linebacker Ahmad Brooks lost his helmet during a play on Sunday and still made a fumble-causing sack with his bare head. The turnover led to a Niners touchdown. The hit left Brooks with a bruised lip and bloody cheek. Harbaugh was particularly interested in the latter.

"Loved it, loved it," Harbaugh told reporters of Brooks' play. "Wish he could have come and wiped some of [his blood] on my cheek."

The San Francisco Chronicle reported that Harbaugh liked the play so much, he had a photo of it blown up and put in the locker room, theoretically to exude toughness and dedication. It could have the opposite effect. Seeing that photo and remembering Harbaugh's blood-on-cheek wish, even the toughest player may stop once that helmet comes off.