Harrison decides to retire

Five-time Pro Bowl linebacker James Harrison has announced his retirement.

Harrison spent 10 seasons with the Pittsburgh Steelers and ended his career in what turned out to be his final year with the Cincinnati Bengals.

The 36-year-old Harrison entered the league in 2002 as an undrafted free agent out of Kent State and he went on to be named Defensive Player of the Year in 2008 when his Steelers team won Super Bowl XLIII.

"I have made the difficult decision to retire as of today," Harrison's statement read.

"My love for my family and the need to be there for them outweighs my desire to play the game. I have missed too many experiences with them because I devoted so much time to my career.

"My love for the game isn't strong enough to make up for missing one more birthday or first day of school.

"I am sincerely thankful to the people who have supported me over the years.

"First and foremost my family, the Rooney family and my Steeler family, also Mr. Brown, the Bengals organization and fans, and last but FAR from least, Steeler Nation."

Coverage of the 2014-15 NFL season starts with the Green Bay Packers at the Seattle Seahawks, live on Sky Sports 1 HD from 1:00am on Friday.