Ever since hitting the open market last week, the former Miami Dolphin has had a long courtship with the Rams. He spent several days in St. Louis taking a physical and trying to hammer out a deal. Negotiations stalled, and the Dolphins tried to woo him back, but in the end he chose to start over with a new team.
Long, 27, is a former No. 1 draft pick and spent his entire career with the Dolphins, where he made four Pro Bowls in five years. His play had declined in recent years as injuries piled up, but he did pass a physical with the Rams and they don't seem concerned about those issues.
The Rams have been determined to surround Sam Bradford with more talent this offseason, adding Jared Cook in addition to Long. It's a risky commitment, but if he can return to his former self, this contract may end up being a steal. As for the Dolphins, they haven't been afraid to throw around money, but weren't able to throw enough to convince Long to stay. His departure opens up another hole on the roster to address.
In an offseason where free agents have had to settle for less than desirable contracts, Long appears to have found the big paycheck he was looking for.