For a franchise together storied together the Pittsburgh Steelers, there’s to be no shortage of good players.
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Identifying 25 good Steelers no a daunting task. Hell, you can pick practically that many from the 1970s alone.
The difficulty lies in ranking therefore many great players.
Should Jerome Bettis be over Franco Harris? Hines Ward over john Stallworth? Ben Roethlisberger over terrycloth Bradshaw?
While yes sir no precise science to compiling together a list, I’ve excellent my ideal to rank these Steelers greats and several others.
Read on to see where your favorite Steelers rank and also whether or not you agree.
25. Joey Porter
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I wrestled with whom to put in the No. 25 point out for part time prior to settling ~ above Joey Porter. Sure, James Farrior and also Aaron smith were good leaders in their own right, yet neither carried the very same kind of leadership as Peezy.
Like Jack Lambert and Greg Lloyd who came before him, Porter was typically the nastiest and most extreme player on the field. And also he had a knack for illustration the ire the opponents.
In six of his seven seasons as a starter in Pittsburgh, Porter collected at the very least seven sacks. He also contributed a sack in each of the Steelers’ three games on the roadway to Super key XL.
24. Carnell Lake
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SHIZUO KAMBAYASHI/Associated Press
Because Carnell Lake spent lot of his career in the same secondary as stick Woodson, he’s not frequently thought of among the Steelers" all-time greats. He should be, however.
Lake is what Bob Sanders could’ve been had he remained healthy.
Lake’s 25 job sacks are among the finest for a defensive back in NFL history. In 1997, Lake notched 6 quarterback takedowns and also three interceptions en course to win the AFC’s defensive Player the the Year award.
Now serving together the team’s defensive backs coach, Lake has actually helped guide the Steelers to two top-ranked happen defenses in the past three seasons.
23. Donnie Shell
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Mark Foley/Associated Press
The Steelers" 1974 draft course is frequently lauded together the ideal ever. Through Lynn Swann, Jack Lambert, man Stallworth and also Mike Webster all joining the team by way of that draft, it’s hard to argue.
Their best steal that year, though, may’ve to be the undrafted Donnie Shell. Like Lake, shell was overshadowed by play alongside a good in Mel Blount. Yet that didn’t avoid him native making rather an impact.
Shell totaled 51 career interceptions, consisting of a impressive run of at least three in 10 directly seasons.
22. Jack Butler
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Jason Miller/Getty Images
Despite play the duration of his job in what to be the Steelers’ dark eras (read: prior to 1969), Butler regulated to knife a bust in the room of call in 2012. An ext than five years after his playing days ended.
Before the likes the Ty Law and Champ Bailey were even thought of, butler was a bona fide sphere hawk. He tape-recorded at the very least nine interceptions in 3 seasons, and his 52 career picks was the second-most ever at the time of his retirement.
Butler passed far at the period of 85 in 2013, but thankfully, he acquired his long-awaited hall of reputation induction the year prior.
21. Andy Russell
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Andy Russell was among the few Steelers native the pre-Chuck Noll era to hang approximately for the team’s first Super key victory. He and a pair of Jacks in Ham and Lambert came to be the gold traditional for linebacker beat in the NFL.
A seven-time agree Bowler, Russell’s legacy hasn’t stand the test of time favor Ham and also Lambert. Nonetheless, I’m sure he bring away solace in the fact that he was able to earn 2 Super key victories ~ enduring fairly a little of losing earlier in his career.
20. Alan Faneca
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Alan Faneca is among a few players ~ above this perform whose Steelers career finished in less-than-ideal fashion over financial issues. Nonetheless, that hardly offer to detract from what was among the best careers in team history.
A nine-time All-Pro, Faneca paved the way for the likes the Jerome Bettis, Willie Parker and also even Duce Staley to have success in black and also yellow. In fact, it to be Faneca who laid a key block to feather Parker’s record-breaking 75-yard touchdown operation in Super bowl XL.
19. L.C. Greenwood
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While the stole Curtain has end up being synonymous with the likes that “Mean” Joe Greene and also Jack Lambert, L.C. Greenwood to be another key cog on those dominant defenses.
Sacks no a videotaped stat in Greenwood’s playing days, however he’s been attributed with 73.5 that them. That total’s just 5 less than the indomitable Greene was attributed with because that his career.
More importantly, Greenwood saved his best performances because that the best moments. Unofficially, he recorded five sacks in his team’s 4 Super key wins.
18. Ernie Stautner
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Several previous Steelers’ jerseys are thought about off-limits, but only Ernie Stautner has seen his number official retired.
Even in the 1950s, Stautner was undersized because that a defensive lineman. Coupled with that, the was play on a historically miserable Steelers squad.
In spite of a determined lack of motivational factors, Stautner’s an ideas was seemingly never ever lacking. Follow to his room of call biography, Stautner to be “known for excellent mobility, burning desire, too much ruggedness and also unusual durability.”
With those traits, Stautner carved out terrific career because that himself. The 10-time All-Pro suffered a litany the injuries in his career and also yet missed just six games in 14 years.
17. Greg Lloyd
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Before Joey Porter and also James Harrison, it to be Greg Lloyd mean-mugging his method into the mind of Steelers Nation. Choose those men, Lloyd was known for providing big hits and also shocking estimates in same measure.
Between the 1991 and "95 seasons, Lloyd tallied 37 sacks and garnered five Pro key bids. A 10-sack season in 1994 earned the the honor of the UPI’s AFC protective Player of the Year award.
Lloyd, the unquestioned leader of the great “Blitzburgh” defenses in the 1990s, was known for put on a shirt the read, “I wasn’t hired because that my disposition.”
Truer native were never ever written.
16. Dermontti Dawson
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Gene J. Puskar/Associated Press
After playing alongside stalwart facility Mike Webster in his rookie season, the Steelers had enough confidence in Dermontti Dawson come slot that in Webster’s point out in his second season.
Dawson rewarded the trust with an ext than a te of terrific play.
Through many of his playing days, Dawson was thought about the unquestioned ideal center in the league. That earned six consecutive All-Pro selections and a clues on the NFL’s 1990s All-Decade Team.
Finally, in 2012, Dawson earned the biggest individual accolade the NFL has to offer: a spot in the room of Fame.
15. James Harrison
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Perhaps no permanently scowling face is much more beloved in Pittsburgh than that that James Harrison.
I remember attending the Steelers/Ravens video game in the 2010 AFC Divisional Round and being awestruck as soon as Harrison exited the tunnel. The watch on his face just said me Joe Flacco remained in for a long day.
Of course, Harrison notched three sacks in the contest.
The undrafted product out of Kent State gone into the NFL with low expectations and matched castle by toiling on practice squads and in the NFL Europe v the early portion of his career.
Eventually, Silverback earned a clues in the beginning lineup and also made 31 teams regret overlooking him. Harrison tallied 60 sacks in six years as a starter and also took home protective Player that the Year honors in 2008.
What he’ll many be mental for, though, is one astounding pick-six versus the Cardinals in Super key XLIII.
14. Lynn Swann
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Here’s one for you. Nate Washington (remember him?) already has much more receptions and receiving yards than Lynn Swann had actually in his career.
So, why then, is Swann considered among the ideal Steelers in franchise history? Simple, nobody did it far better in large moments.
Swann was statistically blanked in Super bowl IX, the culmination the his rookie year. However, he more than made up for the in every of his return trips.
In Super key X, Swann tape-recorded just 4 receptions however made every one count. He perfect the video game with 161 yards, a touchdown and also Super bowl MVP honors.
Swann added another 203 yards and two an ext scores in his team’s next two trips come the huge game.
13. Man Stallworth
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If the town hall a video clip chronicling Pittsburgh"s heyday, you’re an ext likely to see a spectacular record from Swann than Stallworth. However, that the latter that verified to it is in the much better of the two.
Injuries compelled Stallworth to miss practically three season’s worth of games, yet his impact was apparent when healthy.
Stallworth topped Swann’s career finest for receiving yards four times and also held every significant Steelers receiving record as soon as he referred to as it a career.
And prefer his counterpart, Stallworth had actually a few signature moment of his own. Namely, he caught 70-plus-yard touchdowns in supervisor Bowls XII and XIII.
12. Mike Webster
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Mike Powell/Getty Images
Mike Webster, as necessary nicknamed “Iron Mike,” was the personification that toughness.
By simply looking at a scouting report, many deemed Webster undersized. However, you’d be hard-pressed come find many players more powerful than Webster.
A popular gym rat, Webster’s arms looked sculpted out of stone. And he had actually no worries mixing it up through bigger opponents.
Webster’s mainly play didn’t walk unnoticed. The earned nine All-Pro selections and also was anchored in the hall of reputation after retirement.
Unfortunately, it shows up butting heads (literally) with difficult guys choose him for nearly two decades took its toll on Webster. He to be in psychological disarray after ~ retiring and died tragically the a heart strike at just 50 years old.
11. Trojan Polamalu
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Troy Polamalu’s penchant for the spectacular has been unrivaled because being drafted by the Steelers in 2003.
Whether he is diving over the line of scrimmage, comes up through a critical strip-sack or pulling down one improbable interception ~ another, fans have the right to count on obtaining their money’s worth when Polamalu’s playing.
Steelers’ lore is littered with numerous great defenders, so it’s no little feat because that Polamalu to end up in the top half of this list. However, that hardly contestable that he deserves it.
Polamalu’s two finest individual campaigns ended v the Steelers in the super Bowl. And also without him, that might not have actually been the case.
Pittsburgh fans will fondly recall Polamalu’s pick-six in the 2008 AFC Championship game to halt the Ravens" comeback bid. That season ended with the team winning a record-breaking sixth Super key championship.
10. Hines Ward
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Throughout his career, Hines Ward was an exemplary wide receiver.
Wards ranks in the top 20 in NFL background in both receptions and receiving touchdowns. With 12,083 receiving yards, he ranking just exterior the 20-mark.
But it isn’t exclusively Ward’s receiving abilities that earned the a point out in this list’s height 10. In fact, it’s another aspect the his video game that many fans will certainly remember fondly.
Ward played fearlessly. Never ever the best on the field, he had no problem laying a vicious block on any kind of opponent. And he go it with a smile.
9. Jack Ham
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Unlike numerous other players on this list, specifically those at his position, Jack Ham wasn’t known for his aggressive demeanor.
Nonetheless, Ham was cerebral. Seemingly never out the position, the penn State product was able to diagnose plays and also close on the sphere in a hurry.
This skill collection led Ham to force 53 career turnovers, a document for NFL linebackers which tho stands today. He was also unofficially attributed with 25 sacks for his career, making the a member of the reputation 20-sack/20-interception club.
8. Jerome Bettis
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DAVID J. PHILLIP/Associated Press
Several players on this perform finished your careers in different uniforms, however Bettis is the only one to begin his in one.
The Steelers sent out second- and also fourth-round draft picks come the St. Luigi Rams in 1996 in stimulate to achieve Bettis, and also the relocate proved fruitful to say the least.
Listed in ~ 250 pounds (in some years that appeared generous), the suitably nicknamed “Bus” steamrolled defenders ~ above his way to 6th on the NFL’s all-time rushing list.
Bettis’ an initial six periods in Pittsburgh observed him optimal 1,000 rushing yards, yet it may be his critical season that proves many memorable.
Bettis taken into consideration retirement before the 2005 season but decided to stick roughly for one an ext shot in ~ an elusive Super bowl ring.
Of course, Steelers fans every know how this story ends. “The Bus” rode into his hometown of Detroit for Super bowl XL and also was able to close his job in a fashion befitting together a valued contributor.
7. Rod Woodson
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In the annals the NFL history, you’d be hard-pressed to find many much better at your craft than Rod Woodson.
Woodson ranks third all-time through 71 job interceptions. Perhaps much more impressively, he had the ability to parlay his countless takeaways right into 13 defensive touchdowns. That mark is tied through Charles Woodson and also Darren Sharper for the many in league history.
Woodson’s signature minute as a Steeler came in Super key XXX. That tore his ACL in the season’s opened game and also miraculously returned gradually for the large game simply 19 main later.
6. Mel Blount
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One easy method to referee a football player is to take it a look at the affect he had on the game.
When the NFL is forced to transform its rules due to the fact that of one player’s dominance, the player’s legacy is more than likely safe.
Midway v Mel Blount’s career, the NFL presented the “Mel Blount rule,” which outlawed the jamming that a receiver an ext than 5 yards past the heat of scrimmage.
The dominion forever readjusted the method the game is played, however it did small to halt Blount’s dominance. Blount tallied 22 that his 57 career interceptions and two that his four Super key victories ~ the rule’s introduction.
5. Ben Roethlisberger
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Some may contend that this spot’s a small high for Ben Roethlisberger, but they need only look in ~ the years in between his arrival and Terry Bradshaw’s departure.
The Steelers fielded several competitive squads and All-Pro-caliber players, however quarterback play constantly seemed to be their downfall.
Yes, that inherited a talented squad. However he likewise led it to heights not watched in decades.
With 3 Super key appearances and also two victories, Roethlisberger has already given younger Steelers fans a golden e of their own. His 32 career game-winning drives are great enough for 11th in NFL history.
And that course, among those 32 drives stands well over the rest. Roethlisberger’s game-winning drive versus the Cardinals in Super bowl XLIII firmly cemented his status as one of the all-time Steelers greats.
4. Franco Harris
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Gene Puskar/Associated Press
Franco Harris will certainly forever be well-known for his role in what may be the greatest play in NFL history: “The Immaculate Reception.”
By improbably corralling a deflected pass and taking it the distance, Harris helped the Steelers come their very first playoff win and also put an finish to 40 years of futility.
However, Harris supposed much more to the Steelers than just one great play.
Harris ran for more than 12,000 yards in his career and also topped the 1,000-yard plateau eight times, one NFL record at the time of his retirement.
And I’d be remiss no to cite how Harris excelled top top the game’s best stage. His 354 Super key rushing yards has actually stood as a record since he last played in one more than three years ago.
3. Terrycloth Bradshaw
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As much as quarterbacks who’ve won multiple supervisor Bowls go, terrycloth Bradshaw isn’t necessarily thought about the cream the the crop.
He tossed at least 20 interceptions in 5 seasons, and his quarterback rating simply barely over 70. In fact, if not for 2 touchdown tosses in his critical season, his touchdown-to-interception ratio would it is in dead even.
But Bradshaw’s legacy transcends statistics.
No issue what missteps Bradshaw had actually in the game’s first three quarters, the fourth usually belonged come him.
Bradshaw’s nine Super key touchdown passes is one NFL record, and also four that them came in the game’s last stanza.
In fact, of the 103 points the Steelers score in Bradshaw’s 4 Super Bowls, nearly fifty percent (49) of them come in the final quarter.
2. Jack Lambert
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Nobody’s ever before personified what the Pittsburgh Steelers space all about far better than Jack Lambert.
Tall, typical and absent his front teeth, Lambert wasn’t quickly intimidated. And he refuse to allow anyone intimidate his teammates.
In Super key X, Lambert famously tossed Cowboys safety and security Cliff Harris to the ground after that taunted kicker Roy Gerela. The Steelers would certainly go on come score 14 unanswered points and win their 2nd consecutive championship.
Of course, ~ a few incidents favor this, Lambert was widely taken into consideration one of the most terrifying football player in the league. And also it didn’t take lengthy for man Elway to number that out.
Lambert and the Steelers knocked the then-rookie the end of his first professional game and also caused Elway to consider alternate career paths:
"He had actually no teeth, and he was slobbering everywhere himself. I"m thinking, "you deserve to have her money back, just get me out of here. Permit me go be an accountant." i can"t tell you exactly how badly I want out of there."
1. "Mean" Joe Greene
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Ferd Kaufman/Associated Press
Along v Chuck Noll, nobody was an ext important to the Steelers’ epos turnaround than “Mean” Joe Greene.
Greene was originally displeased to be joining a subpar squad, and also he took out lot of his disappointed on his opponents. One such incident had an altercation with cock Butkus, the famed and frightening bear linebacker.
In short, Ndamukong Suh is what Joe Greene would certainly be ~ above Ritalin.
On the field, Greene was a force to be reckoned with. Though he faced constant double- and even triple-teams, he controlled to tally 78.5 job sacks.
The 10-time agree Bowler was likewise one the the elite few to take house the NFL protective Player of the Year compensation twice. The various other players to do so were Mike Singletary, Bruce Smith, Reggie White and also Ray Lewis.
Greene wasn’t the only an excellent player indigenous the Steelers" 1970s dynasty, but he was the one to gain it off the ground.
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