Friday, September 17, 2010
Rams' DE comes with Long history
By Bill Williamson
Son of Howie is headed to the Raider Nation.
Leading the St. Louis Rams’ defensive line into Oakland on Sunday will be none other than Chris Long. He, of course, is the offspring of Raiders’ Hall of Fame defensive lineman Howie Long, whose is one of the most popular Raiders of all-time.
Long was the No. 2 overall pick of the 2008 draft. When the Rams took him, it took a tough decision away from Oakland owner Al Davis. It would have been interesting to see if Davis -- who lets the franchise's legacy influence his decisions more than any owner in sports -- would have drafted Long or whether he would have still selected running back Darren McFadden with the team’s No. 4 pick.
In his first two seasons, McFadden was hampered by injuries and ineffectiveness. However, he was a bright spot in Oakland’s 25-point loss at Tennessee in Week 1. He had 95 yards rushing and added 55 yards in the receiving game.
Long, too, has been a work in progress. He hasn’t been a disappointment, but he hasn’t lived up to being the No. 2 pick, either. He has nine sacks in his career.
Oakland’s offensive line has been a weak link, so watch for Long to try to be a disruptive force in his first game against his father's former team.