PITTSBURGH, Pa. - James Harrison is itching to get back to work. The commute could be an easy one.
The five-time Pro Bowl linebacker posted a thinly veiled message via Instagram on Monday night hinting at an imminent return to the Pittsburgh Steelers.
Harrison signed a one-day contract to retire as a member of the Steelers on Sept. 5, saying the organization remained like family even though Pittsburgh released him the spring of 2013 and he spent last season in Cincinnati.
A reunion would make sense. The Steelers (2-1) lost linebackers Ryan Shazier and Jarvis Jones to injuries in Sunday night's 37-19 win over Carolina.
Harrison tweeted "I'll give it one more year" on Monday while linking to a video in which he asks his two sons if they want him to play football. They hesitate, but when prompted that if he played for the Steelers he could stay home, his sons answer yes emphatically. Harrison lives in a northern Pittsburgh suburb. His family remained behind last season while he played for the Bengals.
The 36-year-old was the 2008 NFL Defensive Player of the Year in Pittsburgh, capping a meteoric rise from undrafted rookie free agent to one of the most dominant players in the league. His production slipped as injuries mounted and Harrison was released in March 2013 when he declined to take a pay cut.
He signed with Cincinnati but saw limited snaps. Harrison recorded two sacks and an interception in 15 games but was primarily used as pass rushing specialist.
A similar role awaits in Pittsburgh. The Steelers have struggled to get consistent pressure on the quarterback, though they did get to Carolina's Cam Newton three times on Sunday night, including a forced fumble by Jones in the third quarter that produced Pittsburgh's first turnover of the season.
Jones was also injured on the play when his wrist smashed into teammate Brett Keisel. Former Buffalo Bills linebacker Arthur Moats stepped in capably, sacking Newton shortly after taking over.
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