The Pittsburgh Steelers will retire Joe Greene's No. 75 on Nov. 2, the team announced Wednesday.
Greene's number will become just the second retired by Pittsburgh after Ernie Stautner's No. 70, which was honored in 1964.
Greene was drafted by the Steelers in 1969 with the No. 4 pick and played all 13 years of his career in Pittsburgh. The defensive tackle was named the NFL’s Rookie of the Year, as well as the Defensive Player of the Year in 1972 and 1974. He was selected to 10 Pro Bowls during his career.
The "cornerstone of the Steel Curtain" in the 1970s, Greene helped lead the Steelers to four Super Bowl victories.
Steelers president Art Rooney II, via Steelers.com:
“Coming into this year with Joe retiring and coming up on the 40th anniversary of the first Super Bowl [victory], we felt it was a perfect time. ... When you look at the 1970s there are a lot of different words that have been used to describe what Joe meant to that team – cornerstone, heart of the team.”
After Greene's playing days, he was the defensive line coach for the Steelers (1987-91), Miami Dolphins (1992-95) and Arizona Cardinals (1996-03). Greene retired from coaching after the 2003 season and spent nine years as a special assistant for pro and college personnel for Pittsburgh.
No. 75 has not been issued to a Steelers player since Greene's retirement in 1981.
Greene also starred in the famous "Mean Joe Greene" Coca-Cola commercial.
- Sarah Barshop