James Harrison visits Patriots on Tuesday

Pittsburgh Steelers head coach Mike Tomlin looks on from the sidelines against the New England Patriots at Heinz Field in Pittsburgh on Sunday Dec. 17 2017. Barry Reeger | Special to PennLive

Over the weekend, the Pittsburgh Steelers parted ways with linebacker James Harrison after fourteen years in a cold and calculated move that's simply part of doing business in the NFL.

Harrison was released by the Steelers on Saturday and was not claimed on waivers, making him a free agent. However, it might be hard to compete with the Patriots who have a number of Super Bowl trophies at which they can point for proof positive that Harrison's likely goal of another championship is best pursued in Foxborough.

But his role decreased as the Steelers transitioned to more pass-coverage work for outside linebackers and rookie. Harrison remains Pittsburgh's all-time leader with 80.5 career sacks.

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The Patriots and Steelers are vying for home-field advantage throughout the AFC playoffs and are locked in to the top two spots in the conference. Both teams have locked up a first-round bye in the playoffs. Harrison has recorded 788 tackles, 82.5 sacks and eight interceptions in his 14-year career.

It looks like the Patriots have a new pass rusher.

When James Harrison eventually retires - it has to happen at some point, right? - he'll go down as a Steelers legend. If they do meet in the AFC title game, Harrison's chance to get revenge against his former team will be one of many awesome storylines. He only played 40 snaps this season and had been on the field for one game since Week 8.

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