Friday morning, the Pittsburgh Steelers announced they’d wear a #3 decal on the back of their helmets to honor the late Dwayne Haskins, who died this April. Speaking to reporters Friday afternoon, running back Najee Harris said he made a push throughout the year to make sure Haskins was remembered and honored by the team.
“That was one thing I reminded Mike T to do a lot of times was Dwayne’s situation,” Harris told reporters via Steelers.com. “I tried to tell him as many times as possible what the team wanted and what we all wanted. We wanted to recognize Dwayne any way possible every game this year. Putting the three on the back of our helmets was one [of those ways].”
Team spokesman Burt Lauten tweeted out a photo of the news and decal, it displayed on the back of Cam Heyward and T.J. Watt’s helmet. The decision received universal praise.
The Steelers haven’t announced any other potential ways they’ll honor Haskins during the season. But since his death, they’ve done their best to describe his life, his great energy, positivity, and though secondary to him as a person, the NFL career he was getting back on track. There was an outpouring of support with the team attending his Pittsburgh memorial.
While Haskins and Harris only spent a year together, it’s clear Haskins had a big impact on everyone inside the Steelers’ locker room. To hear Harris be part of the plan and effort to honor Haskins speaks to his high level of maturity for a 24-year old and second-year NFL player.
Of course, the Steelers were likely to honor Haskins no matter Harris’ involvement, but it’s still a thoughtful and classy gesture on Harris’ part. It’s one of many reasons why he was honored as one of five team captains and one of two on the offensive side of the football. Harris is checking every box you look for in a player and a person and though his leadership is quieter, it still resonates throughout the organization.