Philadelphia Eagles: Don’t count Chris Long out quite yet

FOXBORO, MA - OCTOBER 02: Tyrod Taylor
FOXBORO, MA - OCTOBER 02: Tyrod Taylor /

You’d have to think Chris Long starts opposite of Brandon Graham come day one of the Eagles 2017 season right?

Here’s a question for Philadelphia Eagles fans. How are those imaginary depth charts looking? You’ve all probably shuffled this team’s roster in your mind a hundred or so times by now right? Where does Chris Long come in? Don’t forget the fact that we’re talking about a former second-overall selection in the NFL Draft here.

Fletcher Cox and Timmy Jernigan are, no doubt, your starting defensive tackles. That leaves Brandon Graham starting at defensive end, but who do you have on that other side? Is it Long, Vinny Curry or the rookie, Derek Barnett? There’s no way the rookie should be able to come in and beat out two proven veterans right? Maybe we shouldn’t be so sure about that.

Solving the puzzle:

Some consider Eagles right tackle Lane Johnson to be the best in the game at that position. Whether you’d go that far or not, you can’t deny the dude’s good. This Barnett guy is pretty good. Stories have leaked that Barnett found his way around the veteran a time or two in team workouts. That’s saying something. Still, you can’t deny the fact that Long’s time with the New England Patriots taught us all that he’s got a little left in the tank as well.

Take a look at this highlight reel provided by Philly’s Finest Productions. You can check out their YouTube page by clicking here.

Long produced fairly well for the Patriots a season ago, playing in all 16 games and starting in seven. Still, for whatever reason, he wasn’t used as often when the Patriots continued to make a push towards another Lombardi Trophy. That may actually play in the Eagles favor as Long finished the season with fresh legs and figures to walk into the 2017 season well rested. In his only season in Foxborough, he hustled his way to 35 tackles and four sacks.

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He missed time in 2014 and 2015 due to injury, and that seems to have many believing he’s headed for an early retirement party. Long says he’s healthy and if he can return to form, the Eagles may have something. Figure him to be atop the Eagles depth chart as training camp opens. Whether he stays there or not is up to him, but don’t expect Curry or Barett to hand him the starting spot either.