PITTSBURGH — Steelers defensive lineman Cam Heyward honored one of the best to ever play his position on Friday, by wearing No. 75 at practice in honor of the 75th birthday of legendary Steelers defensive tackle Joe Greene.
Heyward, who usually wears No. 97, swapped his digits for Friday’s practice to 75, which was retired by the Steelers in honor of Greene in 2014, just the second player in franchise history to officially earn that honor.
Today is a great day to wear a Joe Greene jersey 🔥 pic.twitter.com/ZqK63Ds0tC
— Pittsburgh Steelers (@steelers) September 24, 2021
Greene, who turned 75 on Friday, was the team’s first-round selection with the No. 4 overall pick in the 1969 NFL Draft out of North Texas, the first pick with Chuck Noll as the team’s head coach. Noll and Greene helped turn the Steelers into the greatest dynasty in NFL history, winning four Super Bowls.
Individually, Greene was the team’s most decorated player. He was NFL Defensive Rookie of the year in 1969, Defensive Player of the Year in 1972 and 1974 and Man of the Year in 1979.
Greene was a 10-time Pro Bowler, an eight-time All-Pro selection, and part of the NFL’s 1970s All-Decade Team, 75th and 100th Anniversary All-Time Teams.
He was enshrined in the College Football Hall of Fame in 1984, the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 1987 and in 2014, he became the second Steelers player to have his jersey number officially retired.
Heyward, 32, is in his seventh season as captain of the Steelers’ defense and has been a starter on the defensive line since 2013.