It was obvious that 38-year-old outside linebacker James Harrison wanted to play his last few years with the Black and Gold. Via his agent this offseason, he asked for a two-year contract. On March 1, his wish was granted. Via Spotrac, the veteran defensive terror inked a two-year, $3.5 million deal to remain with the team.
At the start of last season, the Steelers defense had not appeared to make much headway from its shaky 2015 performance. But thanks to emerging rookies such as cornerback Artie Burns, safety Sean Davis and nose tackle Javon Hargrave, the unit improved as the year went on.
So did Harrison. While he did not record a sack in his first seven games of the season, he dropped opposing quarterbacks 7.5 times in his final 11 outings. That includes 2.5 sacks in the team’s three postseason games.
In 15 regular-season contests in 2016, Harrison totaled 53 tackles and a team-high five sacks. And in one interception and a pair of forced fumbles and you can see why the physical specimen is still a force. In the playoffs, only Lawrence Timmons (29) had more total stops than the wily veteran (20).