Halas Hall Chat: Marcus Harrison

Anthony Adams was a surprise scratch in Week 1, but rookie Marcus Harrison picked up the slack for the Chicago Bears and registered the first sack of his career against Peyton Manning. Harrison spent a few minutes with Bear Report in the locker room before practice Thursday at Halas Hall.

John Crist: I want to talk to you about Arkansas stuff for a minute. It was a mess for a while with Houston Nutt leaving and then Bobby Petrino abruptly taking over. What was that like to witness being so close to the program?

Marcus Harrison: Honestly, for me I felt it was hard even though it was my last year leaving, but just to see everything go down and how it ended up ending. I would just say I feel Arkansas lost one of the best coaches they'll ever have in there. Those guys are down there fighting, my old teammates, and I'm just rooting for them. Hopefully they can have a great season this year, and like I said I'm rooting for them.

JC: Anthony Adams told us Wednesday that he didn't know until four o'clock on game day that he was going to be inactive for Week 1. Did the coaching staff ever approach you to let you know that you were indeed going to be suiting up against the Colts and a part of the rotation at defensive tackle?

MH: Not at all. I actually didn't know anything. I guess this was one of the welcome-to-the NFL moments. I just thought we all was going to go in and play or dress or whatever. And then when I found out he wasn't going to play then, I understood from there that I was going to have to step my game up if the team had decided to go with me, because he's a great player. I actually look up to him and ask him for advice. When I didn't see he was dressing, it was a surprise for me. But I knew I just had to go in and play my role and help the team.

JC: Everybody talks about the speed of the game from college to the NFL. You got to play four preseason games, but did you notice another leap in the speed of the game from preseason to the regular season?

DT Marcus Harrison
Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images

MH: Yes. I knew preseason was fast. But after a while playing in those preseason games, I was saying to myself, "It's not so fast." Maybe the running backs are fast as far as hitting the holes and stuff. But once the season got rolling and I actually got there on the field, everything was like a blur at first until I had the calm to slow everything down.

JC: Did you have any rookie moments Sunday when you looked across the line of scrimmage and whispered to yourself, "That's Peyton Manning out there. And that's Marvin Harrison and Reggie Wayne."

MH: Not so much. But when you look across in the huddle when they break the huddle, and you see those guys standing in the huddle, it hit me one time for a quick second when I was out there on the field. But then I realized I need to try to make a play or something because I'm out here. But it was the same thing when I came here and saw Brian Urlacher and all these guys that's in here. It was a surprise, but it's here now.

JC: We know you had a great game against Indy and got your first career sack on Manning. But after the coaching staff turned on the film and pointed out some of the mistakes you made as a defense, did you see some plays that you may have left on the field?

MH: Really, I wasn't ever on a high. Everybody was trying to say I was on a high just because of who I sacked. I was just happy to have a sack – period. I always stay humble and grounded, but there was other stuff that I was seeing I could have done better that I'm trying to work on now and get better this week.

John Crist is the Publisher of Bear Report and a member of the Professional Football Writers of America. To read him every day, visit BearReport.com and become a Chicago Bears insider.

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