Coke re-releases famous 1979 ad featuring 'Mean' Joe Greene

One of the most iconic commercials ever made returned to television Sunday night, 36 years after it first hit the airwaves.

Coca-Cola re-released the 1979 spot featuring former Pittsburgh Steelers defensive tackle “Mean” Joe Greene.

The 60-second ad aired during the NASCAR Darlington Southern 500 on NBC.

Greene, a Hall of Famer and four-time Super Bowl champion, is shown in the ad limping back to the locker room.When a boy offers him a Coke, he drinks it.

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As both begin to walk away, Greene throws the boy his jersey.

Greene told Adweek he knew the ad was good, but had no idea how it would “take on a life of its own”.

"Prior to the commercial I was known as a mean guy. Not just 'Mean Joe,' but as a mean guy," he said.

Greene told Adweek his fame from the ad has, in some circles, even surpassed his fame from the football field.

Coca-Cola brought back the commercial as part of NASCAR’s “throwback” promotion.

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