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Steve McLendon bids farewell to Steelers

Steve McLendon, a self-professed 'little-known guy from Ozark, Alabama,' thanks organization, 'brothers' and Steelers Nation for seven years. Mark J. Rebilas/USA TODAY Sports

A lot of Pittsburgh Steelers players, particularly the defensive line, will be happy for Steve McLendon, who just signed a three-year, $10.5 million deal worth up to $12.5 million with the New York Jets, with $4 million guaranteed in the first year.

The Steelers wanted McLendon back but simply weren't willing to match those figures.

McLendon gave the Steelers seven quality years, along with 90 tackles and five sacks at the nose tackle position. He wasn't an all-world player, but he was a solid run-stuffer.

McLendon sounds grateful for his time in Pittsburgh. He released a statement through his agent, Richard Kopelman.

“I want thank the Pittsburgh Steelers for seven incredible years! They took a chance on a little known guy from Ozark, Alabama, which was all I needed. For that, I will always be grateful to the Rooney family, Kevin Colbert, Omar Khan, Coaches Tomlin, Mitchell, LeBeau, Butler, and the entire Steelers organization.

"I will miss my brothers in Pittsburgh, and the amazing fans of Steelers Nation. But I am excited to become part of a great New York Jets organization. I look forward to continued success on the field, and to becoming part of the New York Jets family."