Aug 17, 2012; Minneapolis, MN, USA; Buffalo Bills defensive end Mario Williams (94) during the second quarter against the Minnesota Vikings at the Metrodome. Mandatory Credit: Brace Hemmelgarn-US PRESSWIRE
On Tuesday, we shared with you the tale of ex-Patriots safety and current NBC Sports blowhard Rodney Harrison saying Mario Williams made a huge mistake signing with the Buffalo Bills. After receiving a fair amount of backlash for his comments after a single game, Harrison felt the need to clarify his comments.
"It wasn’t a slap at Mario," Harrison told Mike Florio of Pro Football Talk. "I took less money to go to New England and win. That was my point."
So "I feel bad for him" because he chose to play in Buffalo isn't "a slap at Mario". Nothing has changed in Buffalo at the starting quarterback position since Williams signed, so Harrison is questioning Williams' decision-making - but apparently in an incredibly condescending way. He doesn't see that as insulting, I guess.
By saying he took less money, Harrison presumably wants to be patted on the back, but as I pointed out on Tuesday, he never gave up close to $20 million as he expected Williams to do. Harrison further explains how he wasn't taking a shot at Williams despite saying the former Texan would "get lost in the shuffle" and "fall off the face of the earth" by comparing him to Minnesota Vikings defensive end Jared Allen.
"He’s the best pass rusher in the game, but he’s lost," according to Harrison. "The media only pays attention to the hot teams."
Allen was on one playoff team in Kansas City in 2006 and was traded to the Vikings in 2008. He was part of the push that got the Vikings over the hump from an 8-8 team in 2007 to the playoffs in his first two years with the club. The defense went from 18th before his arrival to ninth and fourth in the following two years. Allen clearly had an impact on the field and was named an All-Pro both seasons - which, by the way, means media was paying attention to him in Minnesota. Allen was again named an All-Pro in 2011 after racking up 22 sacks, and he's made the Pro Bowl in three of his four seasons with the Vikings. If that's "lost", sign me up.
Florio does his best to help his colleague dig himself out of a hole, shifting the focus to quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick. In his initial comments, Harrison said the Bills weren't going anywhere because they didn't "have a franchise quarterback". He continued to say that in his new comments, but I don't think anyone is up in arms over his stance on Fitzpatrick.
To their credit, both Fitzpatrick and Williams shrugged off the criticism. Williams claims to not have heard the initial criticism from Harrison. Fitzpatrick was quick with a response after hearing that news from reporters.
"Mario didn't hear it?" Fitzpatrick said after practice on Wednesday. "Oh, I didn't either, then."
Hopefully this story, like Rodney Harrison, will just go away after this.