Former Steelers linebacker Harrison announces retirement

Former Steelers linebacker James Harrison announced his retirement today. Harrison, who played for the Steelers from 2004-12, wrote a statement about his decision on Facebook.

“I have made the difficult decision to retire as of today,” Harrison wrote. “My love for my family and the need to be there for them outweighs my desire to play the game. I have missed too many experiences with them because I devoted SO much time to my career. My love for the game isn't strong enough to make up for missing one more birthday or first day of school. I am retiring as a man who is truly grateful for all of his blessings. I am sincerely thankful to the people who have supported me over the years, first and foremost my family, the Rooney family and my Steeler family, also Mr. Brown, the Bengals organization and fans, and last but FAR from least, Steeler Nation. Thank you.”

Harrison spent last season with the Cincinnati Bengals. He visited the Arizona Cardinals earlier this week, but the two sides could not come to a contract agreement.

Harrison was a five-time Pro Bowler and was named the NFL’s defensive player of the year in 2008. He also authored one of the greatest plays in Super Bowl history when he returned an interception 100 yards to help the Steelers beat the Arizona Cardinals in Super Bowl XLIII for their sixth Lombardi Trophy.

Ray Fittipaldo: and Twitter @rayfitt1.

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