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ILB James Laurinaitis - St. Louis Rams

6-2, 244Born: 12-3-1986College: Ohio StateDrafted: Round 2

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Quick fantasy outlook: James Laurinaitis - Laurinaitis has emerged as a defensive and team leader, along with DE Chris Long. Also like Long, his borderline Pro Bowl resume led to an extension last year, six years for $42 million ($23 million guaranteed). Laurinaitis enjoyed a career year, pacing the league with 118 solo tackles, adding a sack and two INTs. Just 26 years old, the former high second round pick in 2009 has been a tackle machine since entering the league, averaging over 100 solos in his first four seasons. An ascendant defensive line, with emerging young stars Robert Quinn and Michael Brockers, could partially explain why the production of Laurinaitis is trending up. He compensates for less than elite speed and athleticism with his exceptional football smarts, pre-snap diagnosis, instinctive first step, ability to avoid and get through blocks and outstanding wrap up tackle ability. Barring injury, he is one of the safest IDP bets to finish as a top 10 LB, and has top 3-5 upside as an increasingly rare three down 4-3 middle linebacker.

ILB Rankings: [Redraft]    [Dynasty]   

ILB Projections: [Aaron Rudnicki]    [John Norton]   

St. Louis Rams Projections: [Aaron Rudnicki]    [John Norton]   

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St. Louis Rams Stats: [Season Stats]   

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