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LT's Number & Name Eternalized in Chargers HOF
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Former Chargers running back LaDainian Tomlinson received a double honor at halftime on Sunday with the retirement of his number and induction into the team’s Hall of Fame.
Tomlinson, who played for the Chargers from 2001-2009 is only the fourth Bolt to have his number retired joining Chargers and Pro Football Hall of Famers Dan Fouts, Lance Alworth and Junior Seau.
After a video of Tomlinson’s career achievements played on BoltVision, former Chargers’ fullback Lorenzo Neal inducted LT into the Bolts’ Ring of Honor saying he was honored to stand and congratulate the former running back.
“Every now and then, a team drafts a guy and they might hit a base hit (or) they might hit a double,” Neal said. “But with LT, not only did they hit a home run, they hit a grand slam.”
Truer words have never been spoken.
During his tenure with the Chargers, Tomlinson reached five Pro Bowls, was a three-time first-team All-Pro and two-time second-team All-Pro. He was the league’s rushing leader twice (2006, 2007) and a three-time rushing touchdowns leader (2004, 2006, 2007).
Saying 2006 was a pretty good year for LT is an understatement. Tomlinson was named league MVP and set three NFL records: most points scored in a season (186), most single-season rushing touchdowns (28) and most single-season combined touchdowns (31).
Overcome with emotion, Tomlinson took the podium to raucous chants of “LT! LT!” With tears streaming down his face, he said it was hard for him to talk, citing he never imagined he’d be on this stage receiving this recognition. He went on to thank God, his mother and wife LaTorsha.
He then thanked his former teammates who he recognized as helping his NFL career soar to unimaginable heights.
“When we walked between the lines, it was special every time,” Tomlinson said. “Every one of you, I thank you for putting it all out on the line and sacrificing your bodies for the whole of the team. Thanks to my teammates.”
Tomlinson then thanked the Chargers organization for “taking a chance” on him when they drafted him fifth overall.
Finally, LT thanked the fans; those who supported him and his teammates through thick and thin.
“Last but not least, the fans. When I go out around town and people say, ‘LT, you inspired me.’ The truth is, (the fans) inspired us…Every single game, you came to this stadium (with) your chants, your 21 jerseys (and) your support. You inspired us to make this place special and we won a lot of games here because of you. Thank you, San Diego. I love you.” Read