During the Pittsburgh Steelers’ legendary run of success in the 1970s there was a basic understanding throughout the locker room.
If Joe Greene is talking, you listen.
Throughout Greene’s career, and even as a coach, his voice always seems to resonate more than others. Maybe it is because he isn’t employed by an ESPN or FOX Sports. Maybe it’s because he isn’t one to speak up about these type of things. Nonetheless, even to this day, when ‘Mean’ Joe Greene talks, people better listen.
Greene was on the Zach Gelb show on CBS Sports Radio recently, and was asked about the Steelers’ performance on Thursday Night Football vs. the Minnesota Vikings, and of course was asked about the Chase Claypool snafu in the waning seconds of the game.
Listen to the audio below:
Mean Joe Greene said the first half against the #Vikings was the saddest he’s ever been watching the #Steelers and has a message for @ChaseClaypool.— CBS Sports Radio (@CBSSportsRadio) December 16, 2021
Full @ZachGelb Show chat with @ProFootballHOF Joe Greene here: https://t.co/oemWXa5usk pic.twitter.com/Cll8LCIBy9
For those who can’t listen to the audio, here is what Greene had to say:
“Let me say that in all the years I’ve been watching my team the Pittsburgh Steelers, the black and gold, Thursday night, that first half, was probably the saddest days that I’ve had in all of my years of playing. And all of my years since retirement and watching the Steelers play.
“That was a poor, poor example of the black and gold. It disappointed me, and I’m sure it disappointed a lot of guys that love the Pittsburgh Steelers, and the fans who love the Pittsburgh Steelers.”
Greene was then asked about Chase Claypool, and his celebrating the first down reception with just seconds remaining on the clock. Here is what Greene said he would have said to Claypool in that moment.
“Hey man, I thought you were more educated. Didn’t you go to Notre Dame? Why are you playing this game, for you to show your butt, or win the game?! You made the play, give the ball back to the officials. The clock is ticking, and you are costing your team valuable time.
“I don’t know. That youthful experience and exuberance, I don’t know, maybe it was that. In college when you get a first down the clock stops. Maybe he had a throwback memory, he was in college and thought the clock was going to stop. I don’t know. But the game isn’t about him pointing the first down. Hell, we can see. We know you made the first down, get yourself back to the huddle, give the ball back to the official. Very immature.”
Greene’s comments come in the wake of several national pundits criticizing the play, and his antics, and it make you realize if Claypool doesn’t get the message at this point, will he ever get the message?
For the Steelers, who took Claypool in the second round, their top draft pick, in the 2020 NFL Draft, they want him to change as he can be a dominant force on the team. What is often overlooked is how outside of Claypool’s antics is the fact he had one of his better games as a professional vs. the Vikings in Week 14.
Claypool hasn’t spoken since after the game Thursday night, and he likely won’t speak until the Steelers step on the field at Heinz Field to host the Tennessee Titans in Week 15. It will be at that point where Claypool can do all the talking he wants, but with his actions.
Be sure to stay tuned to BTSC for the latest news and notes surrounding the Steelers as they prepare for the rest of the 2021 regular season.