James Harrison caused an uproar when he signed with New England in December following his release by the Steelers.
But former Steelers coach Bill Cowher doesn't buy the notion that he'll aid the Patriots playmaking after years of game-planning against them in Pittsburgh.
“I think that’s overblown,” Cowher told the Pittsburgh Post Gazette Wednesday. “As much as he can give them information, he’s not knowing what’s being called. From a signals standpoint that probably used to be the case, but now, with all the communication that’s being done through the helmet, I think a lot of that is overblown.”
Cowher also pointed out that both the Tomlin and Belichick regimes have been in place with their respective teams for a while. Multiple players have played in both organizations during that time, meaning there’s not a whole lot that could be left up to the imagination at this point.
“Obviously James was there from the standpoint of giving them some depth, giving them some experience,” Cowher said. “But as the season went along, I think the experience took care of itself.”
The key for the Steelers, he believes, will be learning from their many mistakes the first time around.
“When you look at them, I think it’s the ability to be patient, take your shots when they’re there, but just don’t try to force the ball. I think that’s the biggest thing against them,” Cowher said. “They have a lot of playmakers. You’ve got to protect the ball.”