"Mean" Joe Greene's menacing nickname of yesteryear doesn't fit anymore. At least not this weekend.
The Hall of Fame defensive tackle was a gentle giant during his chat with Around the League on Friday. No head slaps, no swim moves, no kicks to the shin. Greene, the Pittsburgh Steelers legend, was in such a good mood that he handed NFL Network's Warren Sapp a free pass for calling the Steelers' defense "old and slow" at the start of last season.
"Warren wasn't serious when he said it was old and slow," Greene told NFL.com. "He had a reason for saying it, and you ask him what that reason was, and he'll tell you, I'm sure, because he knows about defenses."
Our people will be in touch with QB Killa's people for a deeper explanation, but don't hold your breath.
"(Sapp) did some of the same things we were trying to do in Pittsburgh," Greene said. "In fact, I think some of the defenses they used were brought to Tampa by their coach (Tony Dungy). I think they just took what we did and took it to the next level, and Warren, as a defensive tackle, took what I tried to do -- and wanted to do -- to the next level."
Onlookers can debate which of these two linemen -- Greene or Sapp -- wreaked more havoc back when they were "young and fast." Quarterbacks everywhere are simply thankful they didn't have to face them both at the same time.