Linebacker splits with Steelers and joins AFC North rival.
Former Pittsburgh Steelers linebacker James Harrison has agreed to a two-year deal with AFC North rivals Cincinnati Bengals.
The 35-year-old won’t have to wait long until he faces his former team-mates, as the Bengals play their first home game next season on September 16 against the Steelers.
However, in the bigger picture he will be hoping to help them secure their first play-off victory since 1990. Cincinnati have made the play-offs each of the last two seasons as a wild card team, but have lost to Houston in the first round on both occasions.
The Bengals revealed he had passed a medical and agreed on terms on Friday, but didn’t disclose details of the contract as they await Harrison to return from Arizona and begin work-outs with his new team-mates.
The veteran saw his stint with the Steelers end as they look to move under the salary cap, and despite negotiations to re-work his contract, an agreement wasn’t forthcoming.
He missed the first three games of last season with a knee injury, but finished with six sacks, tied for the team lead, as the Steelers finished No.1 in defence for the fourth time since he became a starter.
The former Defensive Player of the Year helped Pittsburgh to win the Super Bowl in both 2006 and 2008. However, the question will now be how he fits into the Bengals defense and whether he can replicate the form he has shown over the years in Cincinnati.