LATROBE, Pa. (AP) - Casey Hampton's gap-toothed grin is missing from Pittsburgh Steelers training camp. So is the former nose tackle's deep belly laugh and the wisdom that comes with being a five-time Pro Bowler.
Steve McLendon says it's strange running onto the practice field without Hampton's familiar No. 98 trotting off after the team chose not to resign the 35-year-old during the offseason.
Hampton's departure follows the retirements of Chris Hoke and Aaron Smith as the latest change in a youth movement that's left 20-somethings McLendon, Ziggy Hood and Cam Heyward in more prominent roles.
It also leaves veteran Brett Keisel as the unit's unquestioned leader. The defensive end says it's time for the young guys to make their mark in what could be the final season of Keisel's career. His contract is up at the end of the year.
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