On a roster where we are devoid of elite talent and rebuiliding with a rookie Head Coach & QB, why are we contstantly critisising a player who has the genuine ability to be a future Hall of Famer?
I understand the counter argument, that he is not playing at an elite level, due to injuries, zone blocking scheme etc and the fact he wants top tier money.
My argument is this. If Jake Long was a player who did not play through injury and we had a rookie Right Tackle ( J Martin) starting at LT, how much would the fans be craving for the return of Jake Long? People have to remember that this guy has played through injuries when most other would not have. Not just in games that matter but games that have no meaning what so ever (Sparano).
In a contract year, Jake Long, before anybody else, would have realised he was not physically upto performing at his best this season. Yet we have heard no drama with demands for a new contract, rumours of wanting away or complaints about different schemes or having to play through injuries.
If Jake Long hits the open market, I have no doubt that franchises like the Steelers or Ravens would be clamouring after a LT, who has played elite 4/5 seasons, played through injuries, attracts no negative attention and is an ultimate team leader.
Out of any player on this roster, if you asked the question,...... which player would do you believe in, returning to his best ability after down season due to previous niggling injuries? I would come up with Jake Long immediately. I also believe most others would too.