A few notes on Tuff Harris

Chester David (Tuff) Harris is an interesting guy. He got the nickname Tuff as a young kid because of how easily he handled a bad case of pneumonia. A Native American (Crow Tribe) who grew up on a reservation in Montana and transferred to a larger high school so he could pursue athletics at a higher level (he was dunking a basketball in Grade 8). Outstanding in track and field, got a track scholarship as a sprinter to the University of Montana and walked on to the football team. The Grizzlies have a good second tier football program (Football Championship Sub-Division) and he was a starting cornerback and returner, two-time conference all-star. Undrafted in 2007 he signed with the Dolphins and made their practice roster as a safety after a good preseason (12 tackles in four games), promoted to the 53-man roster for one game.The Dolphins cut him in spring of 2008 before training camp as Parcells and Sparano cleaned out the roster they inherited, signed with the Saints and was cut, then signed by the Titans. He had played at Montana with Jeff Fisher's son so there was a personal connection. He was assigned to the Titans' practice roster but was activated mid-season and played six regular season games and was on the 53-man roster for the playoff game vs. Baltimore. He was good on special teams in 08. He smoked Leon Washington as the gunner on a punt return early in his first game and finished the season with eight tackles, I think all of them on special teams. He got some headlines prior to the Pittsburgh-Tennessee game for showing up at Titans practice impersonating Polamalu, complete with fake wig. He had a tackle in that game covering kickoffs, forcing Russell out of bounds on a short return. In the 2009 preseason he had seven tackles and five punt returns for an average of 9.8 yards. From the Steelers perspective he obviously has short-term value for his knowledge of the Titans' playbook and perhaps inside information on Titans' players and depth charts for all sub packages on offense and defense. He's also proved he can step on the field and contribute immediately on special teams, and obviously the Steelers are very thin at safety. He's perhaps just one injury away from being on a game roster. He's 26 years old. 6 feet, 198 pounds. A hero to the Crow Tribe and an over-achiever.

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