The Rams’ franchise has a long, long history, embedded in a variety of cities throughout the United States. Prior to the 1995 season, the Rams were based out of Los Angeles where they played from 1946 to 1994. Some of the most recognizable players, and multiple Hall-of-Famers came from this era, maybe none more famous than the defensive front that was formulate on the 1963 team, touted the ”Fearsome Foursome.”
The line included, Rosey Grier, Lamar Lundy, Merlin Olsen, and Deacon Jones, all of which lived in the opposing backfield. Dick Butkus referred to the unit as “the most dominant line in football history,” and it is hard to find a group since that was as complete or destructive as these four players.
Today, at the age of 74, one of those esteemed members passed away. NFL.com reported this morning that,
[Deacon Jones] died of natural causes in his Anaheim Hills, Calif., home, the Los Angeles Times reported. The newspaper cited his stepson, Greg Pinto, who said his stepfather was sick for some time, so his death wasn’t unexpected. Jones was at home with his family at his bedside when he died Monday evening.
There will be plenty of coverage of this story today, listing Deacon Jones’ celebrated career, with some citing him as the most dominate defensive lineman in NFL history. So, instead of posting mere statistics, here are some videos documenting the historic Rams’ figure, both in the prime of his football career and in his life after…
His presence was felt not only on the football field, but also off the gridiron, in the hearts of many players, analysts, and fans from around the country. The Twitter world took a pause today, dropping the drool talk of OTAs and the celebratory chatter of last nights’ Miami Heat win, all in memory and honor of one of the very best to ever play the game, Deacon Jones.
Deacon Jones filled my childhood and adolescent years in LA with vivid pictures of greatness. I thanked him every time I saw him. RIP 75
— Chris Mortensen (@mortreport) June 4, 2013
Reflecting & HONORING a true warrior & legend Deacon Jones. Thank you for blazing the trail so we all could soar. Your legacy lives forever
— Steven Jackson (@sj39) June 4, 2013
Coined term “sack”, had signature move (headslap), & arguably best defensive player ever. Heck of an NFL influence, Deacon Jones. RIP.
— Ross Tucker (@RossTuckerNFL) June 4, 201
I awake to the worst news in a while, David “Deacon” Jones is gone home! #SackMaster
— Warren Sapp (@WarrenSapp) June 4, 2013
Deacon Jones, who has left us after 74 Hall-of-Fame years, was a Man’s man as well as The Man. May he rest in peace.
— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) June 4, 2013
No one….NO ONEwas more intimidating than Deacon Jones. RIP . The master of the headslap and the inventor of “the sack”
— trey wingo (@wingoz) June 4, 2013
Deacon Jones is one of the four reasons I ended up a Ram fan.He will be missed!
— Jill(@PinkNightmare8) June 4, 2013