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There aren’t abounding teams that can say they accept had as abundant aptitude at one position as the Steelers. For the accomplished alternating years, they accept consistently had outstanding linebackers. This is a attending at 30 players who accept fabricated that happen. It covers about every amateur and connected time contributor aback 1970.
The Steelers ran the 4-3 until 1982. That year they switched to the 3-4, and accept remained that way anytime since, so there will be a few altered types of linebackers on this list. Luckily, alike with the arrangement change, the bequest continued.
So actuality they are, the top 30 Steelers linebackers (ranked by me) aback 1970.
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30. Keyaron Fox (2008-Present) – 28 G, 3 GS – Solid appropriate teams player, was acceptable in his three starts aftermost season. He is actuality to accomplish the account even.
29. Chuck Allen (1970-71) – 24 G – Starting MLB to alpha this era, his best years were in the 60’s with the Chargers, however.
28. Lawrence Timmons (2007-Present) – 46 G, 15 GS, 12 Sacks, 101 tackles – He’s aloof alpha and started to appearance glimpses of abundance aftermost year. Hopefully, his all-embracing d will booty addition big footfall this season.
27. Dennis “Dirt” Winston (77-81,85-86) – 99 G, 22 GS – Allotment time amateur and role amateur on the 1978 and 1979 championship teams. Winston was a acceptable amateur who would accept started full-time on abounding teams, and he did alpha for the Saints from 1982-85.
26. Jerrol Williams (1989-92) – 64 G, 24 GS, 17.5 sacks, 181 tackles – Williams was actual acceptable as a situational canyon rusher and appropriate teams player. He larboard afterwards starting the absolute division in 1992 and actuality somewhat of a disappointment in that role.
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25. Clark Haggans (2000-07) – 107 G, 61 GS, 32.5 sacks, 206 tackles – I was never a huge fan of Haggans, but he did accept his moments. Plus, he captivated bottomward a starting OLB job actuality for four years, which is absolutely a resume architect in this league.
24. Carlos Emmons (1996-99) – 51 G, 31 GS, 12 sacks, 103 tackles – Emmons had the adverse role of accepting to alter Greg Lloyd and was a bit black in comparison. The accuracy was he was a angle out of baptize in a 3-4, and went on to accept seven added solid seasons as a amateur for the Eagles and Giants.
23. Kendrell Bell (2001-04) – 47 G, 44 GS, 18 sacks, 193 tackles – Bell came out of the aboideau strong. Winning the DROTY and activity to the Pro Bowl his amateur season. But, he beneath anatomy there. He had a characterless additional division and an abominable third season. Afterwards an abrasion and attitude issues, he was accustomed to leave in chargeless bureau in 2004, and accomplished his career with three characterless seasons in KC.
22.Henry Davis (1970-73) – Davis played in every d in his four seasons as a Steeler. Arresting stats are not accessible to acquisition from that era but he did accept four interceptions, and he was a primary amateur for three of his seasons. Davis was a solid tackler, by all accounts, and was benign to Jack Ham’s advance as a adolescent player.
21. Jerry Olsavsky (1989-97) – Olsavsky was a guy who gave it all every comedy in practice, and every comedy on the acreage his absolute career. Definitely not adored with the admeasurement and concrete attributes of abounding of his adverse parts, Jerry had a simple plan for success; out assignment every added guy on the acreage and absolutely generally he did aloof that. He played in 119 amateur and started 37 during his time in Pittsburgh, he had 206 tackles and four affected fumbles. The numbers would be bigger had he not suffered some above injuries in the prime of his career. He has aing the Steelers apprenticeship agents for the accessible season.
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20. Earl Holmes (1996-01) – Aback Bill Cowher alleged Holmes to acquaint him they would be drafting him, he congratulated Cowher on acrimonious the best linebacker in the country. Holmes had a ablaze acuteness aboriginal in his career that had been attenuate out of their central linebackers. Abominably for Holmes, his aboriginal blaze seemed to abort aloof a bit as his career progressed, abrogation him ultimately a victim of the numbers d afterwards the 2001 season. But, during his time here, Holmes started 79 games, fabricated 392 tackles and had 9.5 sacks.
19. Loren Toews (1973-83) – Not abounding bodies anticipate of Toews aback they anticipate of the Steel Curtain defense. Toews played an important role as the aboriginal assets and was a amateur for best of the 1977 and 1978 seasons. Big, fast, and solid Toews played in 149 amateur and started 59 of them in his years in Pittsburgh. He is additionally the almsman of four Super Bowl rings.
18. Larry Foote (2002-08, Present) – The acknowledgment of Foote is actual comforting. He is a solid all-around linebacker who plays both the canyon and the run almost well. Foote was a amateur for the 2005 and 2008 championship teams. He has accumulated 283 tackles, seven affected fumbles and 14.5 sacks in 83 starts out of 110 amateur played in Pittsburgh.
17. Bryan Hinkle (1982-93) – Hinkle had the accident of actuality one of the bigger players on some of the affliction Steeler teams out of the aftermost forty years. Hinkle was appropriate adjoin the run and, to this day, one of the bigger advantage linebackers anytime to abrasion the Black and Gold. He played in 163 games, started 116 games, and had 22.5 sacks, 15 interceptions and 11 lix recoveries.
16. Robin Cole (1977-87) – Cole was a above contributor on the aftermost two Super Bowl teams of the 1970’s, and was one of the leaders on the D for abundant of the 1980’s. He was abnormal in that he was appropriately acknowledged on the central and alfresco of that linebacking core, and breach his career arena both. He played in 150 games, starting 126 of them had,16.5 sacks, 15 lix recoveries and bristles intercpetions during his time in Pittsburgh.
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Nickerson will be remembered added for his time as a Buccaneer, but it was Pittsburgh who gave him his start. Drafted in the fifth annular in 1987, he was allotment of one of the greatest drafts anytime by a aggregation (a abstract that included Rod Woodson, Greg Lloyd, Merril Hoge and Tim Johnson).
During his time in Pittsburgh Nickerson played in 84 games, starting 61 and had 9.5 sacks, 426 tackles and bristles affected fumbles. In 1992 he larboard in chargeless bureau and active one of the bigger affairs anytime for a linebacker at the time.
He is a binding applicant to accomplish the Hall of Fame some day.
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It doesn’t consistently assignment out aback the Steelers try to catechumen academy arresting ends into NFL OLB’s, but aback it does it is a admirable thing. Only entering his third division as a starter, LaMarr is already one of the best feared canyon rushers in the league, and his all-around abilities as a linebacker accept been convalescent every time he touches the field.
Woodley has played in 44 amateur with 31 starts and has 29 sacks, 106 tackles and bristles lix recoveries. He was a Pro Bowler in 2009, and if the Steelers can assurance him connected term, anon he is a acceptable applicant to ascend aerial on this list.
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Little was a arrest machine, assuredly accepting acclaim for it with a Pro Bowl nod afterward the 1990 season. He was a abiding a amateur and was a big acumen the Steelers run D never suffered, alike admitting best added aspects did at one point or addition during the 1980’s.
During his time here, Little played in 179 amateur and started 125 of them, accumulation 10 interceptions and a agglomeration of tackles which, unfortunately, were not clearly tallied in those days. From 1983 through 1990, he played in every non bang game.
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Mike Merriweather was a appropriate amateur with all the abilities to be a abundant linebacker in this league. He was drafted in the third annular of the 1982 abstract and became a abounding time amateur in his additional season. In 1984, he access on to the civic apparent with a 15-sack performance, and went to his aboriginal of three after Pro Bowls. Unfortunately, the Steelers were not able to ability his arrangement demands, and accustomed him to sit out the absolute 1988 season, afore aing the Vikings in 1989.
His stats as a Steeler accommodate 76 amateur started, 31 sacks and 11 interceptions.
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Brown was alleged in the additional annular of the 1993 draft. He became a amateur mid way through his amateur division aback Jerry Olsavsky went bottomward with an injury. Brown spent his aboriginal three seasons starting at ILB, and was actual solid. In 1996 he took over at OLB for an afflicted Greg Lloyd, and became one of the top adolescent stars in the league. He was voted to the Pro Bowl and was a aboriginal aggregation All-Pro. Unfortunately, that was a arrangement year and he priced himself appropriate out of the Steelers’ range. He did. however. acknowledge the Steelers ten years after aback he was active mid division to advice an afflicted LB core.
His numbers in Pittsburgh accommodate 31 sacks, and 232 tackles, while starting 49 games.
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There may not be addition amateur who larboard a bigger consequence on a authorization in aloof three years, than Greene did in Pittsburgh.
In his three years here, Greene aggregate 35.5 sacks, six affected fumbles and 154 tackles, while starting all 48 amateur over that span. He was a backstab Pro Bowler, a aboriginal aggregation All-Pro, the NFL sack leader, and helped the Steelers ability Super Bowl 30, during his break in Pittsburgh.
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Silverback’s career highlights would accommodate a DPOTY award, and one of the greatest plays in Super Bowl history.
An undrafted chargeless abettor who didn’t alike accomplish the aggregation his additional season, luckily came aback to the Steelers in 2004, and has never looked back. He spent his aboriginal three years aback as a allotment time amateur and above contributor on the appropriate teams. In the three years since, he has become one of the top linebackers in all of football.
His stats accommodate 38.5 sacks, 282 tackles, 19 affected fumbles and seven lix recoveries. He has been to three after Pro Bowls.
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James Farrior is arguably the best adept chargeless abettor signing in Steelers history. Viewed as somewhat of a apprehension by the NY Jets, the Steelers active Farrior in 2002, and he has started all but four amateur since. He was the baton of two championship defenses.
His stats in Pittsburgh accommodate 124 starts, 605 tackles, 22 sacks, 11 affected fumbles and eight interceptions. He has been to two Pro Bowls and was a aboriginal aggregation All-Pro in 2004.
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Jason Gildon was a third annular alternative in 1994. He got to sit abaft Greg Lloyd and Kevin Greene his aboriginal two seasons, and he acutely took advantage of the experience.
Gildon is the Steelers All-Time sack baton with 77 (the carbon wasn’t kept until 1982) and was a three-time Pro Bowler. He additionally accumulated 372 tackles and 15 affected fumbles during his years in Pittsburgh.
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Intense. That’s the aboriginal chat that comes to apperception aback I anticipate of Joey Porter. His acuteness has occasionally led to issues, but for the best part, Porter has been an outstanding football amateur who can booty over a d at any time.
During his time in Pittsburgh, Porter aggregate 60 sacks, 327 tackles, 10 interceptions and 17 affected fumbles. He went to three Pro Bowls, and was a baton on the Super Bowl XL Championship team.
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An central linebacker with the admeasurement of a arresting lineman is a attenuate thing. As a amount of fact, it would be adamantine to acquisition a bigger linebacker in his weight chic than Levon Kirkland.
During his time here, Kirkland was a activating run crammer who was added than able in the advantage game, as well. He aggregate 639 tackles, 11 interceptions, 18.5 sacks, and 14 affected fumbles. He was a backstab Pro Bowler, and was a aboriginal aggregation All-Pro in 1997.
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Lloyd addled abhorrence into abhorrent players, like actual few men in football anytime have. He was an all about aptitude as a canyon rusher, run stopper, and in canyon coverage. For about four years, he was at the top of all linebacker football talk.
During his time in Pittsburgh, Lloyd aggregate 659 tackles, and 53.5 sacks to go with 10 interceptions, and 34 affected fumbles. He was a five-time Pro Bowler, and a three-time aboriginal aggregation All-Pro.
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Russell is, by far the atomic appreciated, of the abundant Steelers linebackers. I can say after catechism there are twenty or added franchises area he would be the best linebacker they anytime had. Maybe his abridgement of account comes anatomy his 16th annular alternative in the draft. Added than likely, it is because of all those abundant Steeler defenders of the 1970’s. I can say this though, aback all those guys got here, they accustomed to acquisition a aegis led by Andy Russell.
During the 1970’s Russell went to six Pro Bowls.
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Lambert is one of the best feared players in the league’s history. He prowled the average of the Steelers aegis for 11 acclaimed seasons.
The man who was originally a academy QB, became one of the hardest hitting, and best advancing defenders the NFL has anytime seen. During his career, Lambert aggregate 28 interceptions, and 17 lix recoveries. He went to nine Pro Bowls, was voted aboriginal aggregation All-Pro six times, was the 1974 DROTY and the 1976 DROTY.
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Ham has been alleged the best technically complete linebacker to anytime comedy the game. There was no weakness in his game, he rarely absent time to injuries, rarely had a amends alleged on him, and was never out of place. Some of the added ablaze players from the era may be remembered a little better, but Ham was by all accounts what every drillmaster in the alliance wanted.
Ham went to eight after Pro Bowls, was a six-time aboriginal aggregation All-Pro, and had a Steeler linebacker almanac 32 interceptions.
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