Have you noticed how much that new Pittsburgh Steelers running back Najee Harris hurdled defenders during his college career at Alabama? If you have done any research on YouTube since the Steelers selected Harris 24th overall in this first round of the 2021 NFL Draft, you likely have run across a few videos dedicated to his hurdling exploits at Alabama, Below is one of those videos.
Recently, Harris had a one-on-one interview with Missi Matthews of Steelers.com. During it, Matthews asked about his famous hurdle move. Harris’ mom, Tianna Hicks, is on record as saying that she doesn’t necessarily like seeing her son hurdle defenders, but mentioned that he has got better at it over the years just the same.
“I’m not going to lie now, when I talk to him I’m like, ‘You need to stop all this hurdling because you’re going to get hurt. But then when I’m out in the crowd watching him I’m like, ‘Damn, that was tight.’” Hicks once said in an interview.
“I mean, I didn’t know she said that, that I got better at it because she never liked me [hurdling], neither did Coach [Nick] Saban like me hurdling,” Harris said. “But, it’s more of an instinct thing, like I am a bigger back, so defenders tend to go low on me, so I want to have an answer to any situation that I’m in. How I am surviving? I don’t know; the grace of God. I don’t know how to survive something, to be honest with you. Because when I’m in the air, I’m like, ‘Oh, man.’ I make sure I get up as high as I can because if I get hit there’s going to be a lot of impact on the ground.”
I doubt that the Steelers will attempt to curb Harris’ exploits at this point. Harris built it into his game and how he runs. The only thing we can hope for moving forward is that Harris doesn’t take a big shot in the NFL while hurdling that results in him suffering an injury of some sorts. We might need to keep some sort of Harris hurdle counter on the site for his rookie season. He’s sure to go up and over a few defenders in 2021.