When the St. Louis Rams selected James Laurinaitis in the 2009 NFL Draft, many wondered if the Rams should have instead taken USC MLB Rey Maualuga.
It didn't take long for Laurinaitis to make himself a presence in the metaphorical and literal center of the defense in his rookie season. And he hasn't stopped since then.
Laurinaitis hasn't missed a single game since being drafted, and his permanence in anchoring the Rams' defense in his seven seasons is what has seen him ascend the record book ladder to find himself atop the franchise record list for tackles.
It was in true James Laurinaitis fashion in week three when he took the record as his own.
In a 6-12 loss to the Pittsburgh Steelers that was overshadowed by the Rams' lack of offense, the debut of RB Todd Gurley and a gruesome injury to Steelers QB Ben Roethlisberger, Laurinaitis' record-grabbing effort went largely unnoticed.
I have just been really blessed by the Lord to stay healthy for seven years. I really wish we could have won.
Me too. But less for the Rams and more for James.
He deserved it.
He earned it.