BEREA, Ohio — Browns center Alex Mack says Steelers linebacker James Harrison led with his helmet on more than just the two plays that sidelined two of his Cleveland teammates with concussions.
Mack said Harrison, who was fined $75,000 for his hard hit on Browns wide receiver Mohamed Massaquoi and knocked out Joshua Cribbs on a running play, speared running back Peyton Hillis when he was on the ground.
“The helmet-to-helmet with Cribbs is a little more innocent, to some extent,” Mack said Thursday. “You’re still leading with your head. It’s a dumb move no matter what you do. If you watch the game film, [Harrison] was doing that to everyone on every play. People would be on the ground and he would try to spear them. There’s a play on film where Peyton Hillis is tackled and he comes up and spears him. It’s like you’re being cheap, you’re being dirty.”
Mack said he is pleased with the media attention being given to the helmet-to-helmet hits and believes the league should do all it can to protect and educate players.
“A lot of the arguments right now are people are taught from Pee Wee football that this is how you play,” Mack said. “Well, we need to change that. You can’t be breaking your head. There are better ways to tackle. We’re taught you’re not supposed to spear with the top of your head.”
Shortly before his hit on Massaquoi, Harrison blasted Cribbs, who ran the ball out of the wildcat formation. Neither Cribbs nor Massaquoi has practiced this week. Harrison returned to practice on Thursday, one after he threatened to retire because of the league’s crackdown on dangerous hits.