Najee Harris has been one of the premier rookies in the NFL this season. Drafted by the Pittsburgh Steelers out of Alabama, he’s in the top ten in the league in rushing yards. After the Steelers and Detroit Lions put on one of the most horrifically bad games in recent memory, he revealed that he didn’t know a basic rule of the game.
ESPN reports that Harris didn’t realize the game was over after the time elapsed in the overtime period of the Steelers 16-16 tie with lowly Detroit. He said a teammate told him. It’s the first tie he’s ever been involved in.
“I didn’t even know you could tie in the NFL. In my mind, I was sitting on the bench saying, ‘I’ve got another quarter to go.’ But someone came to me and said, ‘That’s it.’ I’ve never had a tie in my life before.”
Harris wasn’t the only one to make the embarrassing realization way too late. Lions running back Godwin Igwebuike said there was plenty of confusion about the league’s overtime rules. More than two players didn’t know how it worked.
“It’s nuts. I’m back there like, ‘Yo, how many overtimes can we do?’ And they’re like, ‘Three’ … I hear, ‘Two, one,’ and we were like, ‘Yo, whatever’s going on, we’re about to just put our all into it.'”
It’s hard to believe that these players have never watched a National Football League game that ended in a tie. While uncommon, they do happen about once a season. Last year, the Cincinnati Bengals tied the Philadelphia Eagles. The Lions tied the Cardinals in 2019, but Igwebuike was not yet on the team at the time.
What do you think about professional athletes not knowing a common rule? Let us know in the comments!