Cincinnati Bengals linebacker James Harrison said this week that he spends up to $600,000 “year in and year out” on services for his body, half of his guaranteed salary over the next two years, for services that include a six-person live-in staff during the season, and said he will do “whatever there is” to make himself better and healthier.
After being released by the Pittsburgh Steelers last year, Harrison, 35, was given a contract by the Bengals in April after the team determined he was past a knee injury that caused him to miss training camp and the first three games of last season. The Bengals’ contract with Harrison is for $4.45 million over two years. Only his $1.2 million signing bonus is guaranteed, so he essentially spends nearly half of his guaranteed salary over the next two years on his own body. Over the previous four seasons, Harrison earned more than $23 million. The live-in staff includes a chiropractor, an acupuncturist, a homeopathic doctor, a trainer and a number of masseuses.
Now entering his 11th season, the 6’2″, 242 lb. linebacker said spending that kind of money is the only way he knows to best position himself for a long NFL career, according to Cincinnati sports writer Paul Daugherty:
“You want to stay in this business for a while, you’re going to have to take care of your body. If you want to do that, you’re going to have to spend money. It’s not cheap. I spend between $400,000 and $600,000 on body work, year in and year out. I tried out maybe 150 different massage people. Now I’m down to five. I got six people I regularly see.”