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Bears' Tommie Harris: Benching 'very disturbing'
September 30, 2010 4:11 PM | 12 Comments
By Brad Biggs
Calling it "very disturbing" when he learned he was benched for Monday night's game against Green Bay, defensive tackle Tommie Harris said Thursday he loves playing for the Bears and won't ask for a trade.
"No, I don't want to be traded," Harris said after practice. "I love Chicago. I love my team. I love my teammates and I play hard for this city. I play hard for my players. That is what I do every time I am out there."
Coach Lovie Smith said the decision to make Harris inactive for the Packers game was made for production reasons.
"I think I did all right (in the first two games)," Harris said. "But I didn't do Tommie Harris good, my standards and what I feel I am used to at a Pro Bowl level. But it will get to that.
"I wasn't frustrated that I didn't play, it's just that it's Monday Night Football, you know? It was very disturbing when I found out the news, but what can you do? You have great vets. Lance (Briggs), (Brian) Urlacher, guys talked to me and just told me to be ready when it is my time again."
The Bears' defensive tackle said he doesn't know if he is going to play Sunday night in New Meadowlands Stadium against the New York Giants, but isn't worried about what will happen if he remains on the bench.
"That is not a big deal for me right now," Harris said. "It's all about winning. When you win, nothing really matters at the end of the day. So, whatever it takes to help this team."
Smith was clear Wednesday that it wasn't a permanent move, but Matt Toeaina has been regularly praised and it might be difficult for Harris to reclaim his starting job quickly. Harris' agent Drew Rosenhaus was at the game at Soldier Field and met with team officials before the game. Whether they discussed Harris is not known.
"We haven't complained about what Tommie has done as far as trying to get ready for the games each week," Smith said. "He had a good practice today. We'll see how it goes."
Harris maintained he is behind doing what is best for the team and he just had to go with the decision that was made. But in his mind is he really not one of the 45 best players on the roster?
"You have to ask Lovie that question," Harris said. "That is what they said was best for the team."
Harris made the right moves after practice Thursday afternoon at Halas Hall. But if he's not back on the field soon, you can count on him becoming a significant distraction in the locker room. It will be interesting to see what direction this heads. The NFL's trading deadline is Oct. 19 but the Bears don't have depth at the position to move a player.