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Four players to “retire” as Steelers before Friday night practice

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The Steelers are putting a little twist on the former player coming back to sign a one-day contract so he can retire as a member of his old team theme.

They’re going to have four former Steelers come back to “retire” as members of the team at their Friday night public practice. Ed Bouchette of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette reports that Willie Parker, Joey Porter, Aaron Smith and Marvel Smith will take a final lap in front of the fans.

The quotation marks are necessary because they aren’t going through the motions of signing the one-day contracts, but just showing up to announce the end of their playing careers. Two of the players, Parker and Marvel Smith, fall into the category of whether a formal announcement is even necessary. Parker last played for the team in 2009, and recently kicked off a collegiate coaching career, while Smith last set foot on an NFL field in 2008. Porter and Aaron Smith both played last season, but injuries helped close the book on their playing days.

There are moments when the retiring as a member of a team thing feels ridiculous, but this is an appealing approach to it. The fans have plenty of memories of these players and inviting them to share in the moment is a win for both sides.

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17 Responses to “Four players to “retire” as Steelers before Friday night practice”
  1. paulieorkid says: Aug 3, 2012 1:32 PM

    Awesome!

    I hope Wallace can take in just what it means to be a Pittsburgh Steeler!

  2. ziggy26 says: Aug 3, 2012 1:35 PM

    The Friday night practice at Latrobe is a big deal for the local community. It draws a huge crowd. I’m sure these “retirements” are part of the festivities.

  3. slizzyslizz says: Aug 3, 2012 2:19 PM

    I’m not a steelers fan but his record td run in the super bowl deserves some recognition.

  4. jupitersteel says: Aug 3, 2012 2:25 PM

    Classy team. That’s why I’m a Steeler fan.

  5. steeelfann says: Aug 3, 2012 2:25 PM

    Aaron Smith = unblockable beast

    You just could not run right or keep him off QB when he was in prime.

  6. choppinwood says: Aug 3, 2012 2:58 PM

    Well deserved.
    The Steelers could use each and every one of them now, if they were in their prime. Good luck to them.

  7. billsfan1 says: Aug 3, 2012 3:09 PM

    maybe i’m the minority here, but i dont mind when teams do this…to me it is the ultimate sign of respect to the city and organization.

    but to claim smith off of qb’s just isnt true. He was a very good player but lets not carried away…
    44 career sacks and only 3 seasons of more than 50 tackles.. that equates to a very good career…hardly unstoppable though

  8. tomthebombtracy says: Aug 3, 2012 3:20 PM

    Watched the Steelers-Colts from SB 40 year on NFL Network and Porter had a BEAST of a game. At the end Peyton famously threw his O Line under the bus (Jerome Bettis, too) when he said “we had problems with protection.”

    Those old complete games are useful to remember how well players did in their windows. I had thought of this game as only the famous Bettis fumble, Ben’t tackle to prevent the TD (the most important tackle in Steelers’ history) and Troy getting badly jobbed on an INT that was turned over on review.

  9. mitchitized says: Aug 3, 2012 3:20 PM

    @steelfann: TRUDAT! Aaron Smith, IMHO is one of the all time greats for DEs in the 3/4 scheme. He brought his blue collar, lunch pail mentality in an era of holdouts and divas…

    I’m proud he wore the back and gold, but would celebrate him no matter what team he played for. Washing him and his family the best!

  10. cash804 says: Aug 3, 2012 3:20 PM

    yyyaaaawwwnnn…

  11. tdk24 says: Aug 3, 2012 3:32 PM

    Parker = 1 big play.
    Porter = 1 big mouth.
    Never heard of the Smith’s. Ohhhh, the musical group!

  12. thetokyosandblaster says: Aug 3, 2012 3:37 PM

    They should retire a bunch of players on their current roster as well.

    Get some new, talented blood on that roster so that they could maybe make the playoffs.

    As it stands, they’ll be lucky to finish 3rd in their division.

  13. terrellblowens says: Aug 3, 2012 3:37 PM

    The ceremonial one day contract is being overdone. I feel like it should be reserved for francise icons an none of these guys really for the bill except maybe Aaron Smith and Joey Porter. A nice gesture by the organization but I feel like it loses its meaning when it is done so frequently

  14. stairwayto7 says: Aug 3, 2012 3:37 PM

    They need to have the seattle defense there so Parker can run thru them again!

  15. bigdan7885 says: Aug 3, 2012 3:41 PM

    Hope they don’t pull a hammy taking that lap.

  16. steelcurtains says: Aug 3, 2012 4:49 PM

    terrellblowens says:
    Aug 3, 2012 3:37 PM
    The ceremonial one day contract is being overdone. I feel like it should be reserved for francise icons an none of these guys really for the bill except maybe Aaron Smith and Joey Porter. A nice gesture by the organization but I feel like it loses its meaning when it is done so frequently
    ————————————————-
    If you read the article it says they’re NOT doing the one-day contracts. I don’t believe the Steelers have ever done a one-day contract for someone so they could retire a Steeler. Mike Tomczak tried to do it and they wouldn’t let him.

  17. holeinone09 says: Aug 3, 2012 5:40 PM

    Classy gesture by a classy team. Fans there will enjoy it.

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