It's probably not a good idea for Roger Goodell to count on support from James Harrison(notes) in regard to anything he proposes. Goodell could announce tomorrow that he's launching the NFL Foundation to Make Baby Giraffes Smile, and Harrison might accuse him of giraffe abuse and exploitation.
So it's no surprise that Harrison is outspoken when it comes to the topic of an 18-game schedule. And thank goodness, because we've had a bit of a shortage of interesting quotes from Super Bowl players this week.
Here's Harrison, via PFT:
“I don’t think it is a good thing if you’re worried about player safety,” Harrison said of the 18-game season. “It’s nothing about player safety. It’s about them making money.” [...]
“The biggest thing that hurt them was when Mr. Rooney came out and said he would rather it stay at 16 games and that he doesn’t need the money,” Harrison said. “He’s the main voice and most respected voice among the owners. He came out and said exactly what it is. It’s about them making money. It’s not about us. With them talking about player safety and all this fine stuff, that’s just a show to make them look better. It’s something to give the people to look at and have them think that they are trying to do something positive.”
On the subject of the "fine stuff," Harrison said this to Jarrett Bell of USA Today:
"Roger Goodell," Harrison says, "I don't know if he even played peewee football."
Bless Harrison's heart for speaking his mind. Not that I necessarily agree with him -- I think he's dead-on about the 18-game schedule, but I don't think Roger Goodell's participation or non-participation in pee-wee football is relevant to anything -- but I love that he's willing to say it.
Harrison's reckless disregard for rules and the commissioner's wishes might get him fined and make him bitter, but it also probably makes him the MVP of Super Bowl week.