Eagles Address Defense, Sign Veteran DE Chris Long
(973espn.com) - The Eagles went the Band-Aid route at defensive end during the league's spring meetings, agreeing to terms with veteran edge player Chris Long on a one-year deal.
Long played eight seasons in St. Louis after being selected with the No. 2 overall pick in the 2008 NFL Draft before moving to New England last season and winning a Super Bowl with the Patriots.
The veteran, who turned 32 on Tuesday, played all 16 games for New England last season, starting seven, and amassing 22 tackles, four sacks, three pass breakups and one forced fumble.
The son of Pro Football Hall of Famer and former Villanova product Howie Long, Chris joins a defensive end rotation that includes Pro Bowl selection Brandon Graham, Vinny Curry, Marcus Smith, Steven Means and Alex McCalister and could help replace some of the reps Connor Barwin provided in 2016.
Although a rotational player at this stage of his career, Long is a traditional 4-3 defensive end and was graded as No. 59 out of 109 qualifying edge players by ProFootballFocus.com last season while Barwin, an outside linebacker by trade moved to DE by Jim Schwartz, was No. 100.
Long reportedly signed for $2.4 million, the same money he got from the Patriots last season.
-John McMullen covers the Eagles and the NFL for 973espn.com. You can reach him at firstname.lastname@example.org or on Twitter @JFMcMullen