Yes, James Harrison is serious about recouping lost NFL fine money

In the wake of the Tom Brady decision, Pittsburgh Steelers linebacker James Harrison has inquired about getting fines recouped through courts. Justin K. Aller/Getty Images

PITTSBURGH -- When Pittsburgh Steelers linebacker James Harrison on Monday told reporters he's checking with the NFLPA to explore whether a statute of limitations exists for recouping money lost by fine, it was hard to tell whether he was kidding around.

Harrison can be unpredictable that way.

So I checked with Harrison's agent, William Parise, and he's indeed discussed this matter with his client.

They've explored how this might work through the NFLPA. The situation hasn't gone much farther than that, but Parise is intrigued, largely because of Tom Brady.

"Certainly there's an open door because of the courts overturning the commissioner's ability to hear his own appeals," Parise said.

In this case, a player sees Goodell striped of power and wants to act.

The NFL fined Harrison $125,000 for various hits in 2010 and suspended him one game in 2011 for a hit on then-Browns quarterback Colt McCoy.

Whether Harrison can get money back misses the bigger point. The fact that we're even talking about recouping fines from four or five years ago illustrates the impact of U.S. district judge Richard Berman reversing Brady's four-game suspension last week.