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Top Ten Steelers Tandems Of All-Time: LC Greenwood & Dwight White (#6)

Peanut butter and jelly. Abbott and Costello. The Pittsburgh Steelers and a rapid increase in your blood pressure every Sunday. Some of the world’s truest reliable duos.

That got me to thinking. Who are the best tandems in Steelers’ history? A dynamic duo who dominated the league. If one guy didn’t make the play, the other did. With such a long and storied history, it was difficult to come up with a list. But here’s my order of the top ten in black and gold. These are all players who played the same position, weighed by individual talent and the success shared together. So you won’t see, for example, QB to WR combinations on this list because if I did, that’s basically all this list would consist of (Bradshaw to Swann, Bradshaw to Stallworth, Ben to Ward, Ben to Brown, you get the idea). And these are duos only. Buddy system here, only pairs of two, not three or more.

#6: DEs LC Greenwood & Dwight White (1971-1980)

Ok, now we’re getting into the heavy hitters of this list. As much as I love to reflect on the old old history, talking about players like Lynn Chandnois and Big Daddy Lipscomb, guys like Greenwood and White are simply in a different class.

These two had the combination of big talent who played together for a longtime. Greenwood, and honestly I forgot about this until I reread his bio, was part of Chuck Noll’s inaugural draft class in 1969. A steal at that too, one of Bill Nunn’s HBCU gems, selecting Greenwood in the 10th round out of Arkansas Pine-Bluff. White was added two years later with a bit more pedigree, a 4th round pick.

From 71 to 75, these two started all but one game together at defensive end (Greenwood missed one in 1972). Teaming up with Joe Greene and Ernie Holmes in the middle, they formed the Steel Curtain, arguably the greatest defenses in football history.

White quickly made two Pro Bowls and though it took Greenwood until his fifth season for his first such trip, he ended up making it six times, including a pair of All-Pro teams. These two, along with so many others, brought Pittsburgh to their winning ways with each man winning four Super Bowls during the 70s.

Official sack totals weren’t kept in the regular season until 1982, both guys had retired by then, but playoff sacks were logged. Greenwood had 12.5 in his career, five of them in 1975 alone, while White had nine, including three in both ’75 and ’79. Unofficial records have Greenwood at 73.5 while White had 46.

 

Neither player seem like good bets to make the Hall of Fame. White’s chances hover around zero while Greenwood, despite his compelling case, will have to get lucky and get through the senior committee. But without them, there is no curtain, no blanket of a defensive line that enveloped running backs and quarterbacks with equal glee. Together, they helped make the Steelers a dynasty that history will never forget.

Top Ten Tandems

#10: DTs Ernie Stautner & Big Daddy Lipscomb (1961-1962)
#9: OGs Ramon Foster & David DeCastro (2012-Present)
#8: CBs Mel Blount & JT Thomas (1973-1981)
#7: RB/RET Lynn Chandnois & Ray Mathews (1951-1956)
#6: DEs LC Greenwood & Dwight White (1971-1980)

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