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The Najeh Davenport Memorial Tournament: James Harrison vs Ben Roethlisberger

NEW ORLEANS - OCTOBER 31:  Ben Roethlisberger and James Harrison of the Pittsburgh Steelers communicate in their own special language -- an abrasive series of guttural intonations and awkward flailing.
NEW ORLEANS - OCTOBER 31: Ben Roethlisberger and James Harrison of the Pittsburgh Steelers communicate in their own special language -- an abrasive series of guttural intonations and awkward flailing.

Things have gotten real serious on Planet Seahawk lately. Trades and un-trades and almost-trades and cuts and re-signings and re-cuts have been filling the pages of Field Gulls and the collective consciousness of the 12th Man for the better part of two weeks. Two-minute conversations with a coach are ending (or at least re-routing) lifelong NFL dreams. There's a general roster-centric tension tempering the excitement that accompanies the beginning of a new season as our focus has been diverted from Xs and Os to PSs, PUPs, and IRs.

It is in that very serious vein that I bring you the third match-up in the Najeh Davenport Memorial Tournament, where we, the discerning readers of Field Gulls, vote on which player would make the worst roommate in the NFL. Round One has already seen the impish Cortland Finnegan best serial-pouter Jay Cutler and the self-aggrandizing Terrell Owens beat out every mom's fantasy son-in-law Tim Tebow. Today features a landmark showdown, as teammates square off against one another for the first time in NDMT history.

That the Pittsburgh Steelers are hated 'round these parts is a fact as commonly accepted as gravity, so it's only fitting that their moon-faced quarterback and tactless linebacker face off in the bracket. So who would be worse to live with, 12s, Ben Roethlisberger or James Harrison?

Vote after the jump.

James Harrison (LB, Pittsburgh Steelers) -- Some guys just want to fight. A lot of guys want to look like they want to fight, but few seem to legitimately pursue confrontation like 2008 NFL Defensive MVP James Harrison. Signing a lease with him would be signing up for 12 months of eggshell walking. The dude emerged from unheralded obscurity to prominent superstar and instead of showing graciousness or even indifference to the team for his ascension, he's used his success as a platform to publicly flog his quarterback, coach, running back, and commissioner, so you know he wouldn't hesitate to make life tough for his roommate.

Harrison: You gon' do these dishes or what, bro?

Me: Yeah, as soon as --

JH: Soon as what?

Me: As soon as Wipeout is over.

JH: Today's your day for dishes, ain't it?

Me: We both know it is, and I'll do them in a second. Besides, there's just a couple of cereal bowls in there.

JH: Nah man, you got these ravioli plates too.

Me: Ravioli? You mean from when you made dinner two weeks ago?

JH: Yeah, they've been under my bed. And now they're in the sink.


Me: Hey James, I got a couple friends coming over to watch the M's game.

JH: ~looking at himself in the mirror while holding hand gun~ No you don't.

Me: Yeah I do. Caleb, Kyle, and Jared, remember them?

JH: I'm sure they remember me, but they still ain't coming over.

Me: Why the hell not?

JH: Cuz I don't remember you asking me.

Me: Uh, James. Why do you have that gun?

JH: ~clicking off the safety~ Why you asking so many questions?

Me: Whatever.

JH: The Mariners suck!

Me: ~mumbling~ I know.


JH: Hey man, you the one who left these shoes in the hallway?

Me: Um

JH: It best not have been you.


JH: James Harrison ain't having no white boy leaving his broke ass kicks around the house. You best hope it wasn't you.

Me: James, I --

JH: Tell me it wasn't you, and everything's gonna be okay. ~stands up menacingly~

Me: James, I'm literally the only other person living here. Those are my only pair of shoes. You know they're mine.

JH: ~steps towards me~

Me: I'll go move them, alright?

JH: ~body-slams me through the coffee table~

JH: Now you done broke my mothafuckin' coffee table.

Me: ~spends rest of the day whimpering and attempting to fix the table~

JH: You better not be bleeding on my carpet.


Ben Roethlisberger (QB, Pittsburgh Steelers) -- I know what you're all thinking: there's no way he writes this whole article without making a sexual assault joke. Watch me.

To watch Ben Roethlisberger in games, post-game interviews, and on the sidelines is to see professionalism in quarterback form. He is composed, calm, talented, and hard-working. He assumed a leadership role almost immediately upon joining the team and has seen unprecedented early-career success in terms of winning. From a coach's perspective, he is the type of QB you'd kill to have. The thing is, I can't see a guy that goofy-looking being very put-together in a domestic setting.

For one, Roethlisberger strikes me as a very slovenly individual. he seems like the kind of guy whose unwashed socks are always on the couch, whose bed rarely has sheets on it, and whose half-eaten bowls of chili lay around the apartment attracting flies. He looks like he'd have a lot back hair that would inexplicably wind up everywhere from the sink to the kitchen counter. Plus, he's got a toaster oven for a head.

Turns out, however, that I'm wrong. According to this David Fleming article, the world's most famous weeble-wobble is an annoyingly perfect roommate.

Pretty soon, an all-out roommate war ensued. (Mike) Larkin tried everything. He ate his food. He switched off the TV in the middle of his video games. He put him in headlocks. He even flicked his ears on the team bus. "I broke every roommate rule known to man to try and get to him, but nothing worked," says Larkin, the school's all-time leading receiver who will be on some smart GM's roster next season. "But Ben just has this weird calm to him no matter what's going on around him. I was the one who ended up snapping."

So maybe he wouldn't be all bad. Then again, there would always be the issue of why Ben spends so much time in the bathroom. (There it is)