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  1. #1
    HUbison's Avatar
    HUbison is offline Superbowl MVP
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    My personal reality check re: Long

    I can't help but be excited for tonight's preseason game. For all sorts of obvious reasons, but none moreso than to see our highest draft pick since future HOFer Orlando Pace.......Chris Long. I watched him at Virginia for the past couple of years with dreams that he would play Sundays in horns. Well, it's not yet Sunday, but tonight he will certainly be playing in horns.

    However, as I watch the Jets v. Browns, I am reminded that above all Chris Long is a rookie. Yes, he's a high draft pick; yes, he has received praise from every level of the organization. But he's still a rookie. Just as Vernon Gholston is a rookie. I watch Gholston, who some have even referred to as God-like, get man-handled by the Browns 2nd string offense. He is getting zero penetration, is being drug downfield by ball carriers, and looks absolutely lost in coverage. In fact, you can almost see him trying to react after the snap. This physical phenom looks completely overwhelmed.

    But he too is a rookie. And while Jets fans shouldn't discard their hope for Gholston based on the performance in their 1st game, Rams fans should take note that Chris Long may be a great player, even future pro-bowler; but for now (and the rest of this year even), he will be, and most likely play like.........a rookie.

    "Before the gates of excellence the high gods have placed sweat; long is the road thereto and rough and steep at first; but when the heights are reached, then there is ease, though grievously hard in the winning." --- Hesiod

  2. #2
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    Re: My personal reality check re: Long

    Very true. I'm keeping my hopes up that Long won't look as bad as Gholston though...While they both are rookies, (I know I'm biased) I've always thought that Long was more polished and NFL ready. Hopefully no one jumps on him, or any of the Rams rookies, too soon.

  3. #3
    RamsFanSam's Avatar
    RamsFanSam is offline Pro Bowl Ram
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    Re: My personal reality check re: Long

    You said it, bro. I have zero doubt that he will look fantastic for a rookie. If he looks as good as LL did in his first pre-season game, I'll be extremely happy...and I expect something close to that.

  4. #4
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    Re: My personal reality check re: Long

    Any chance it will be broadcast somewhere on the internet?

  5. #5
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    Re: My personal reality check re: Long

    I wasn't a fan of Gholston's and don't think he'll be that great of a pro, but I thought that Long might translate well to this level. I just hope it doesn't take him all that long to get acclimated- I think for this defense to do well, he's going to have to perform almost immeditately- especially if Haslett decides not to blitz all that much.

  6. #6
    TekeRam's Avatar
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    Re: My personal reality check re: Long

    You make some very good points Hub, and as one of Chris' biggest supporters, I have to keep my expectations down as well.

    Every year you see rookies that just get it. They've arrived and they are ready to get things done on the pro level. Some of them highly drafted, like Peyton Manning or Julius Peppers(a #2 and the last non-linebacker Defensive ROY), some of them overlooked, like Maurice Jones Drew or Marques Colston. Those who are overlooked tend to have a chip on their shoulders and go out to prove themselves. Those who are first round picks, and high first rounds picks don't always have that chip, but have the raw talent and hopefully mindset for the pro game. Even more than that, the high draft picks have an enormous amount of pressure placed upon them. Now they end up possibly being the highest paid players on their teams, despite not playing a single pro snap.

    Now, why do I bring this all up? Two reasons. First, even the ones that get it, most of them don't usually become all-pros in their first seasons. There are those who do, however, they are few and far between. Even though they are the top of their rookie class, that's what they are... rookies. They will play like rookies for a good percentage of the time. They aren't used to the length of the schedule, and aren't used to having to devote their whole lives to learning the game and more than that, getting used to the speed of the game.

    My second point is that Chris has a very good chance at being one of those rookies that get into the game immediately, however, as I've said, he will still play like a rookie. Chris gets the chip on his shoulder by looking up trash talk on him and his team. He knows he needs to become his own man and not live in his father's shadow. For that he gets a chip onto his own shoulder. Chris has dealt with pressure well so far in his career, having been "Howie's son" and has thrived on it, but as with any player, he could break down because of it, though at this point it seems that his only real problem is that he's still thinking too much.

    Like Hub saw with Gholston, we could see with Long, in that he will look like he's reacting after the snap and not going full out yet as he adjusts to his new teammates. The question will be how quickly he stops thinking and just gets to playing. That will be the key to him truely arriving and getting the pro game. There's no doubt that he has the mental and physical tools to do so, and I think he will become a dominant player in this league, I just hope that he does so this year.

  7. #7
    Ramblin` Ram's Avatar
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    Re: My personal reality check re: Long

    I think he`ll hit the ground running..but i dont think he`ll lead the NFL in sacks anytime soon....the odd sack here..the out forced fumble there... im dying to see how he does..but what really has the saliva juices flowing for me..is the fact that we got Chris Long on one end,Leonard Little on the other...with AC in the middle (alongside Clifton Ryan)..

    im not looking for Chris to be "the man" just yet..just to play to his ability at this point..then progress from there..im not expecting him even start to reach his peak till he`s about 27.


    Go Chris Go Rams.

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