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Steelers' Harrison suspended for one game

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Steelers' Harrison suspended for one game

From Comcast SportsNet

PITTSBURGH (AP)Pittsburgh Steelers linebacker James Harrison has been suspended for one game without pay for his hit last week on Browns quarterback Colt McCoy.

NFL Executive Vice President Ray Anderson said Tuesday the suspension is the result of Harrisons fifth illegal hit against a quarterback in the past three seasons.

Harrison, who can appeal, laid a helmet-to-facemask hit on McCoy during the Steelers 14-3 victory over the Browns. The 2008 NFL Defensive Player of the Year was penalized for roughing the passer on the play and said Monday he believed the hit didnt warrant further punishment.

If the suspension isnt overturned or reduced on appeal, Harrison wont be allowed to be at team facilities until next Tuesday, Dec. 20.

Coach Mike Tomlin said the team respects the leagues decision while acknowledging Harrisons play was a foul.

Were disappointed for James because we know how hard hes worked to play within the rules, Tomlin said. We accept the judgment rendered by the league office and well move forward.

He is the second player suspended by the league this season for on-the-field conduct. Detroit Lions NT Ndamokung Suh was suspended two games for stomping on an opponent last month.

The league says Harrison was fined six times in 2009 and 2010. He was fined 125,000 last year for a series of hits, growing so frustrated at one point he threatened to retire.

Instead, he returned and has remained effective this season while keeping it clean. He has 10 sacks despite missing a month with a fractured right orbital bone. The hit on McCoy marked the first time this season hed been flagged for an illegal hit.

Cubs Talk Podcast: Where do Cubs go from here with Jake Arrieta, Wade Davis?

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USA TODAY

Cubs Talk Podcast: Where do Cubs go from here with Jake Arrieta, Wade Davis?

In the latest CubsTalk Podcast, Kelly Crull and David Kaplan look ahead to Thanksgiving and discuss the official coaching hires for the Cubs.

They also talk about where the Cubs go from here with Jake Arrieta and Wade Davis, whether Alex Cobb could factor into the rotation plans and Kap goes off on the 11:30 a.m. Opening Day start time.

Check out the entire podcast here:

Why Dion Sims' return may not lessen Adam Shaheen's role in the Bears' offense

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USA Today

Why Dion Sims' return may not lessen Adam Shaheen's role in the Bears' offense

Dion Sims was limited in practice on Wednesday, but he participated — marking the first practice he took part in since Oct. 27. Sims said he feels “great,” so assuming he’s getting closer to playing on Sunday against the Philadelphia Eagles, that begs the question: What does it mean for Adam Shaheen?

The short answer, according to offensive coordinator Dowell Loggains: Not much. 

“We don’t want to slow down his progress,” Loggains said. “And as long as he’s making steps in the right direction — we’re high on Dion Sims as well — but we do not want to slow down Adam’s progress that way.”

Shaheen has caught all six of his targets the last two weeks, totaling 80 yards with a touchdown and displaying some encouraging chemistry with quarterback Mitchell Trubisky (who was his offseason roommate after the pair were drafted in April). Against Green Bay and Detroit, Shaheen played 52 and 73 percent of the Bears' snaps, respectively. 

The Bears didn’t use Shaheen in Sunday’s critical two-minute drive against the Detroit Lions, though, turning to Daniel Brown instead of their second-round draft pick. Loggians explained that he didn’t want to overload Shaheen with responsibilities after his elevation on the depth chart due to Sims’ illness and Zach Miller’s season-ending injury. So Shaheen was tasked mostly with first- and second-down plays, while Brown became the Bears’ third down and two-minute guy at tight end. 

“It was mainly so Adam could focus in on his role,” Loggains said. “And as he keeps growing that way, we’ll  keep expanding that package for him. But that was the reason why.”

The Bears need Shaheen’s role to expand, though, for him to meet the usual expectations placed upon a 45th overall pick. There are going to be some situations, especially running ones, where Sims has to be on the field, possibly at the expense of Shaheen. But if the Bears were to step back and take a bigger-picture look at their offense, there are some good signs of Shaheen and Trubisky growing together, just as the team hoped when they made the pair their first two selections in the 2017 draft. The return of Sims shouldn’t disrupt that growth. 

“He’s earned the play time the last two weeks,” Loggains said. “He’s played better and better and he had some things on the first level in the blocking game that he needs to improve on that Dion is really good at because he’s played a little bit longer. We do want to play him, continue to grow him, continue to grow him and grow the reps that way, especially without having Zach here. So there is a role that — we’re still missing a little bit of a role that we’re kind of splitting between Adam and Dan. 

“But we’ll continue to play him more, and each game will be a little bit different, how it dictates. But yes, we do see him, his role just like Tarik (Cohen’s) to continue to grow weekly.”