Chicago Sun-Times

Tommie Harris-Deuce Lutui tussle began on play before ejection

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Before I get to 10 quick reactions from the game today (and maybe a few extra, who knows), I went back to the copy of the game tape to see if I could determine what set Tommie Harris off this afternoon.

No one in the press box I spoke to could remember the last time a Bears' player was ejected from a game, at least recently. I sure have not seen it in nine seasons, although I can tell you that running back Walter Payton was given the heave-ho from a game at Atlanta in 1980.

At any rate, there wasn't a lot to watch because Harris got kicked out on the fourth play of the game. Here's what I saw:

1-10-AZ 19. There was no interaction between Harris and Deuce Lutui, and Harris ran over to say a little something to his friend Larry Fitzgerald after he dropped a pass.

2-10-AZ 19. Lined up on the opposite side of the line, Harris had an unblocked path to Kurt Warner as left guard Reggie Wells blew his assignment. Harris hit Warner as he got rid of the ball. Again, no interaction with Lutui.

3-10-AZ 19. Harris was knocked down at the beginning of the play and as Warner released the ball, Lutui hit Harris again as he was trying to get up, the beginning of their brief scrum for the day.

1-10-AZ 42. Lutui drove Harris to the ground quickly at the beginning of Tim Hightower's 13-yard run. Lutui stayed on top of Harris well after the play ended. The television cameras cut away at this point. When they pick up action again, Harris has flipped the tables and he's on top of Lutui and punches him with his right hand in the facemask with referee Ed Hochuli within feet of the action. Middle linebacker Hunter Hillenmeyer stands there shaking his head.

The Bears didn't make their $40 million man Harris show accountability and discuss his ejection afterward. NFL rules mandate that players be available for postgame interviews. Harris split the locker room before reporters were allowed in and then stuck around to socialize with Fitzgerald and others afterward. Fellow defensive tackle Israel Idonije said that Lutui has a reputation for being dirty and "he's one of those guys, that virus, that cancer.'' All the more reason for Harris to watch himself around Lutui, right?

"[Harris] just apologized, and we understood,'' free safety Danieal Manning said. "I've been ejected, it was high school and you being a big part of the team, a big spark on the team and it happens. You just have to cut down the margin of error as much as you can. Try to get away from the guy when you can, but we understand where Tommie is coming from, and he got caught second, and most of the time that's how it happens.''

Harris, who was benched two weeks ago, has now created a situation where those in the organization, should they choose to do so, can make him a scapegoat for problems that appear to run deeper than a player who couldn't control himself for one afternoon.

Check back a little later on for some rapid reaction.

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What are the odds of us using Harris as bait for either a trade or for draft picks? Because this fella just seems to be a parasite rather than a benefit. I say we should use him for a trade of sorts because I believe that things are too far beyond repair.

Who is dumb enough to punch someone in the face, when that someone has a helmet on? That's right, Tommie Harris.

I been watching tommie all through college and have never seen him react to dirty play....
Seems like a long shot, but maybe lutui said something about the fort hood shootings in tommie's hometown of kileen, Texas.... Making a joke about to try to get under his skin and it just hit a little too close to home... I know it's really a stretch but since he's never reacted like that and nothing seemed to physically dirty

Damm.. Harris is moronic... I get lutui cheap shotted him.. but how about just blowin the guy up on the next play??? You wanna fight or play ball?? This guy gets a fat contract and ever since then has just acted like a big baby !! what a punk!! Just shut up and play ball!! Gees..

At least now we know why Tommie Harris responded in such a hastily manner to retaliate. It is apparent the opposing may have done even more that the cameras didn't pick up.

STILL NO EXCUSE! But at least now I or know what caused the behavior. The reason I point this out is because Tommie Harris didn't look upset when on the sidelines and eventually leaving the game.

I think he realized he got caught in the NBA - NOT NFL - rules of don't get caught throwing the first punch. I didn't think it was that serious but the refs did.

Thanks for the inside info Brad.

NFL rules state that anyone throwing a punch is grey area, no interpretation. You take a swing, you take a shower and go home...doesn't matter if it is aggressive or violent in its intent, the penalty is the same

As usual, Tommie's emotion and passion are totally misdirected. instead of putting all of his energy into improving as a player, he puts it into reaction to what he felt was excessive. When any offensive lineman gets a D-lineman on the ground, they take a shot. They lay on top of them if possible, or they hit them when they are down. It's all fair game, and never penalized.

Lutui beat him on 2 plays, and he gets ejected. He has to be smarter than that, but even more importantly, the coaching staff has to be smarter than that and put him on suspension. Not like he was making a difference anyway. We need to get some players on the field that have some heart. Tommie does not. Passion and emotion without direction is useless. Toeaina and Gilbert should get some playing time, at the expense of the $40 million dollar headache. Let's put it this way...On the inactive list, they both have as many impact plays as Tommie does the last few weeks....

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This page contains a single entry by Brad Biggs published on November 8, 2009 9:44 PM.

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