Sometimes one player can make a difference, and Hall of Famer Joe Greene saw that last season when Cameron Heyward was placed on the reserve/injured list with a pectoral injury in November.
"It was amazing looking at what I saw when Cam was missing," said Greene. "That one player did affect a lot of spots."
It wasn't just missing his play that Greene thought had an impact, but also just his presence. Not having Heyward on the field from a leadership standpoint is something Greene felt was missing for the defense as well.
"I am sure that his presence in the locker room and on the field was missed," said Greene. "It's hard to provide that same leadership when you are not playing, when you are not on the field. I say that from a perspective that when I played I think I had solid ground to stand on whatever my actions were. When you were not playing, and there were times when I didn't and I had to watch my team, I became a cheerleader and that wasn't what I wanted to do. I could be a cheerleader, but football is about playing it and getting it done."
Greene said that while some players bring a vocal leadership to the game, Heyward has a different approach. And it's an approach that works.
"You know the old saying, 'Walk softly and carry a big stick?' To me that is Cam," said Greene. "It's an action thing. It's not about the mouth, it's about the doing. From what I have seen, Cam is a doer. You have to be a doer, Cam is."