Joe Greene retires from front office

PITTSBURGH -- Steelers Hall of Famer Joe Greene is stepping down from his role in the team's player personnel department.

Greene announced his retirement on Monday. He had spent the past nine years as a special assistant for pro and college personnel for general manager Kevin Colbert. The 66-year-old Greene says he enjoyed his time scouting for the Steelers and will miss working with the organization.

"When I played, our success was based on the people there -- the players, coaches and front office -- and I felt the same way when I was in scouting," Greene said in a statement from the team. "The people were very important to me, brought me along and made me feel comfortable, and I thought we made a pretty good team together. The people that I was working with made it all good for me -- made it important to me -- made it special. I will miss everyone in the Steelers organization."

Greene served as the cornerstone of Pittsburgh's "Steel Curtain" defense after being taken in the first round of the 1969 NFL draft. He earned four Super Bowl rings with the Steelers and was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 1987 following a 13-year career.

Steelers president Art Rooney II called Greene an "inspiration" to the franchise throughout his playing and coaching career and said he will "certainly continue to serve as an ambassador of this organization for many years."

"There are very few people in the history of the NFL who have had a greater impact on one franchise than Joe Greene has had on the Pittsburgh Steelers," Rooney II said in the statement. "As a player, Joe was the cornerstone of the greatest defense of all time. As a coach, Joe helped Chuck Noll finish his tenure as head coach. Then we were fortunate to have Joe rejoin the organization in our player personnel department for the last nine years, which included two more Super Bowl championships."

Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.