Today I am going to do a shout out to the best left tackle in the NFL who will hopefully be a Miami Dolphin for life. That LT is Jake Long, and he is easily the best football player on the team even though he isn't usually recognized for it.
When I was doing my research on Chad Henne I couldn't help but notice how well Jake Long blocked. Whenever there was a sack on Henne I could pretty much be certain that that sack was not Long's fault. He is just that good, and I would be willing to put down a good bit of money on the fact that he will be a Hall-Of-Famer once he retires. In his three years with the Dolphins he has been a Pro Bowler every time, and that is even more impressive considering that he had to play with an injured shoulder this past season.
Having such a talented lineman at Left Tackle that you will never have to worry about is a luxury that most teams don't have. Thankfully, Miami does, and it has been great for them. There was a lot of talk about the fact that the Dolphins drafted Long over Matt Ryan, and while I would love to have Ryan I am glad that we have Long. He gives his quarterback confidence and peace of mind because he knows that he is covered on the left side. That confidence allows the quarterback to be more patient in the pocket and deliver better throws. If you guys thought Chad Henne didn't do well last year, just imagine how he would have done without Jake Long in there protecting his blind side.
I would argue that LT is one of the Top 5 most important positions in football, and maybe even higher. Having Long is a luxury that we will all continue to take for granted until he leaves and we don't have him anymore.
No position on the offensive line is a glorious one, and good linemen don't get the recognition that they deserve, which is why I am glad to write this for Long.
Thank you to James for giving me this idea, and now I want you guys to tell me your thoughts on Long. I doubt that there will be much arguing about this one, but it would still be nice to hear some more compliments and reflections about him.