James Harrison, NFL to meet Thursday over Al-Jazeera report

ByJeremy Fowler ESPN logo
Wednesday, August 24, 2016

PITTSBURGH -- Steelers outside linebacker James Harrison will meet with NFL investigators on Thursday at 11 a.m. over the Al-Jazeera report that linked four active players to performance-enhancing drug use, his agent Bill Parise confirms.

Green Bay Packers linebackers Clay Matthews and Julius Peppers are set to meet with the league Wednesday. Free-agent linebacker Mike Neal will meet with NFL investigators on Thursday in Chicago.

An NFLPA attorney will be present at Harrison's interview, as well as the others, to help limit the questions to the specifics of the Al-Jazeera report, a source told ESPN's Dan Graziano.

The NFL says it will not comment on details of its interviews with the players.

The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette first reported that the date of Harrison's interview had been moved up from Aug. 30.

Harrison originally proposed the Aug. 30 meeting in a letter the NFL Players Association sent to the league on Harrison's behalf. In the letter, Harrison set forth conditions limiting questions to only the segment cited in the Al-Jazeera report in which he was identified.

That letter was in response to the NFL's threat of suspensions if players didn't schedule interviews by Aug. 25.

The NFL last month cleared retired quarterback Peyton Manning, also named in the report, after he cooperated with the league.

Harrison, 38, couldn't help himself recently when he discussed the league dangling punishment over failing to cooperate with an investigation.

"If it leads to the hands of that crook, I mean Roger Goodell, he can do whatever he wants," said Harrison, who wants to broadcast his interview for transparency on Thursday night after a preseason game with the Eagles. "That's just the collective bargaining agreement that the players signed [in 2011]."