It seems like it was just a few years ago that the Pittsburgh Steelers drafted linebacker Lawrence Timmons in the first round of 2007 NFL Draft and the organization certainly hit the sweet spot with his selection. Timmons, who is now wrapping up his 10th season in the NFL, will make his 100th consecutive regular-season start on Sunday at Heinz Field against the Baltimore Ravens and that’s quite an impressive milestone.
In case you weren’t aware of it, Timmons, who is now 30 years of age, has the longest games-started streak (99) in the NFL when it comes to linebackers. He’s also played in 118 consecutive regular-season games and that’s also currently tops in the NFL when it comes to the linebacker position. The last time he missed a game was in 2009, his third season in the league.
Entering Sunday’s game, Timmons leads the Steelers defense in total tackles with 98. In case you’re curious, fellow inside linebacker Ryan Shazier is a distant second with 69 total tackles on the season. Additionally, Timmons has two interceptions on the season with his second one coming this past Sunday in the Steelers come-from-behind win over the Cincinnati Bengals.
It’s always fun to go back and revisit what was immediately said about certain players after the Steelers drafted them and here’s what head coach Mike Tomlin said about Timmons following his 2007 selection.
“Of course we’re extremely excited to have Lawrence. His football character is what we seek,” Tomlin said. “He’s a guy that loves the game, he’s very versatile, his skill set defies scheme which is some of the things that we have talked about. He’s an outside backer, he’s capable of playing off the line of scrimmage, he’s capable of playing on a tight end, he has pass-rush capabilities, but ultimately, he has what we call the RH factor. He’s a runner and a hitter and he’s a Pittsburgh Steeler.”
Tomlin also compared Timmons to another great linebacker that knew quite a bit about at the time during that 2007 post-selection press conference.
“He has some Derrick Brooks qualities,” Tomlin said. “You don’t necessarily want to put that on anyone because Brooks is a legendary player, but he runs around and strikes people. He is relentless and he loves the game.”
While Timmons isn’t currently under contract for next season, it’s hard to imagine that he won’t be re-signed during the quickly approaching offseason. He’s playing very well right now on defense and hopefully that continues into February.