Chris Long was as aggressive in the process of free agency before the start of the 2017 NFL season as he often is when in pursuit of the opposing team’s quarterback. Long decided that he was not one to wait to be approached by prospective teams and would instead choose what he felt was the best situation for himself and do what he can to make the deal.
The Philadelphia Eagles defensive end offered his thoughts on the process that brought him to Philadelphia just months after earning a Super Bowl ring with the New England Patriots, the team the Eagles will face in Super Bowl 52.
Long says his desire to play for the Eagles’ organization developed after a conversation with former Eagles star Connor Baldwin. Long made a call to Eagles executive Howie Roseman and the two men began the negotiations process.
Long said that many people thought he was crazy for his decision to leave the Patriots. He went on to explain that insults like ‘old’ and ‘washed up’ were hurled in his direction.
Long would stick to his guns and says that once he found the team that he wanted to play for the rest of the equation was simple.
The approach by long has paid off for both himself and the Eagles as the 32-year-old has been as valuable an asset in the locker room as he has been on the field where he is a member of a defensive line that overwhelms enemy offensive lines with waves of pressure.
Long has sacked the quarterback five times while forcing four fumbles this NFL season and was responsible for two big plays that had a major impact on Sunday’s NFC Championship game win over the Minnesota Vikings.
Patriots coach Bill Belichick begrudgingly agrees that the decision made by Long was the correct one. Belichick also goes on to say that Long’s skill set is a much better fit for the system used by the Eagles than the one favored by the Patriots.
Long says his favorite part of being an Eagle is being a part of the Philadelphia community. He lives on the city’s outskirts and has been an active participant in many events and programs since becoming an area resident.
Long and teammate LeGarrette Blount, also a member of the Patriots a season ago, have the unique opportunity to join NFL greats Charles Haley and Deion Sanders as the only duo to win consecutive Super Bowls while playing for two different teams.