Talking Steelers Football With L.C. Greenwood
L.C. Greenwood won four Super Bowl rings in his 13-year career with the Steelers, playing on the famed Steel Curtain defense.
Greenwood, a former 10th round draft pick in 1969, always stood out and not just because of his 6-6 frame, but the gold hi-tops he wore were easy to notice.
Greenwood had 73.5 sacks and 14 opponents fumble recoveries in his impressive career.
After his playing days ended Greenwood remained in the Pittsburgh area where he became involved in several businesses, including an electrical supply company and a coal and natural gas marketing company and light manufacturing.
Greenwood recently took time out to talk with Teresa Varley for a new feature on Steelers.com titled Talking Steelers Football.
The following is what he had to say.
*When you hear the name Steelers, what is the first thing that comes to mind?
The first thought that comes to mind is that's my former football team. That's the team I played for most of my life. I spent 13 years playing there.
How closely are you able to follow the team still? Do you get to games at Heinz Field often? *I don't get to games that often, hardly at all, unless we are having a special event at Heinz Field. I don't like sitting down watching the game with others. I prefer to watch it at home.
*When you watch a game, do you watch it as a fan would or as a former player?
Now I try to be like a fan. I try not to analyze it any more. I like to just watch the game like fans do.
What is your impression of Mike Tomlin?
I thought he did a great job for his first season. He got the team to the playoffs and any time you can do that you have done a great job. He probably did more than most people expected the team to do in his first year.
Do you think this 2008 team has the weapons to go deep into the post-season?
Naturally I think they have the weapons to do that. A lot of things have to go their way. They have to stay away from injuries. They have to play well. Any time you get on the football field you have an opportunity to win the game if you play well. If they have that attitude going into the season I don't think they have a problem with doing what they want to do. Teams aren't going to roll over and let them win. They have to go out and play football.
Does it amaze you that people today still talk about the gold shoes that you wore? Did you ever think they would be that big of a conversation piece?
Every where I go people talk about them. I just got back in town from an event and that is what I am known as. All of these years after playing football they still call me the man with the gold shoes. I never thought about them being talked about. I was doing something just for the sake of doing it. I never thought they would get that kind of attention. People know the shoes, they don't know me.
*Can you believe that there are just as many Terrible Towels waving at Steelers games today as there were when you were playing – that it's something that has never wavered? *I can't believe there are as many there, even more are there now. Everybody has them. Every where I go someone asks me to sign one. It's not unusual to see all of them. Every member of a family now has a Terrible Towel, not just the family having one.
What is it about Steelers fans that make them special?
They are just crazy for Steelers football. They are knowledgeable of football. They know what is going on out there on the football field. The kids and women even know about football. They know what's going on with the team. People tell me stuff. I don't even know some of the stuff that people tell me.
You remained in the Pittsburgh area after your playing days. Looking back was that a good move for you?
I think it is the best decision I ever made. I love Pittsburgh. It's a great city. There are great people here. I enjoy living here in the area. It's a great city to live in.
It's been a tough year for the Steel Curtain, losing two members. Has that been hard for you to deal with?
That has been and still is hard. It's pretty difficult to see my buddies, the guys I grew up with. We were more like brothers than teammates. It's tough to know they are gone. I think about these guys often. We didn't see each other all of the time, but we saw each other and talked often enough. I go places and things make me reminisce about being there with them, or a conversation about it. It's a terrible loss. It's hard to realize we are getting to that point where we aren't going to be seeing each other. It's hard to think about Dwight and Ernie not being around. I think about them all of the time. It's tough.