James Harrison Apologizes For Article, Says 'I Am Not A Homophobic Bigot'

After covering his eyes and firing round after round of verbal bullets at teammates and Roger Goodell, as well as posing with very real guns, Harrison issued a long apology, tweeted by Josina Anderson of Showtime's Inside the NFL.

After calling Roger Goodell a word used for hate speech against homosexuals and saying, "If that man was on fire and I had to piss to put him out, I wouldn't do it. I hate him and will never respect him," in a recent article in Men's Journal, Harrison said this about his choice of words:

I also need to make clear that the comment about Roger Goodell was not intended to be derogatory against gay people in any way. It was careless use of a slang word and I apologize to all who were offended by the remark. I am not a homophobic bigot, and I would never advocate intolerance of gay people.    

Harrison also previously criticized Ben Roethlisberger, saying, "stop trying to act like Peyton Manning. You ain't that and you know it, man, you just get paid like does." He went on to call running back Rashard Mendenhall a "fumble machine." He addressed these as well in his apology.

I did make comments about my teammates when I was talking about the emotional Super Bowl loss, but the handful of words that were used and heavily publicized yesterday were pulled out of a long conversation and the context was lost. Obviously, I would never say that it was all Ben's or Rashard's fault that we lost the Super Bowl. That would be ridiculous. Both Ben and Rashard are great players and great teammates. Clearly the entire team bears responsibility for the loss, me included. It was a team effort and a team loss. My teammates know me well, and hopefully understand the things I said were not meant to accuse them of the loss. We all have discussed several things that went wrong in the Super Bowl since that day. What I do apologize for and take full responsibility for is for speaking in such a candid manner to someone outside the team.

Harrison concluded his apology by clarifying that his original point was to try to get the league to re-assess its stance on dealing with player safety issues. He advocated the second amendment, as well, though we can't really be sure if he meant guns. 

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