Kyle Long – Oregon
Age when drafted: 24
Hometown: Ivy, Virginia
Collegiate Number: 74
Combine notables: 4.94 40 with 1.68 10 split, 28” vertical, 8’11” broad jump
Games Viewed: 2012 – USC, Arizona State, Stanford
Kyle Long attended St. Anne’s-Belfield School in Charlottesville, VA. He played baseball and football and was drafted by the Chicago White Sox in the 23rd round of the 2008 MLB Draft. Long didn’t sign with the White Sox instead choosing to play baseball at Florida State.
A DUI in January 2009 combined with academic struggles led to Long leaving Florida State. Long opted to return to home, get his life together and enrolled in Saddleback Junior College in Mission Viejo, CA. Long would return to the football field and played two years at Saddleback before enrolling at the University of Oregon. Long’s first season at Saddleback was spent at defensive end before settling in on the offensive line in year two. Long has one year of major college football under his belt at Oregon which will be the major knock on him entering the draft.
Long has pedigree in spades as his father is Hall of Fame defensive end Howie Long and his brother was the No. 2 overall pick for the St. Louis Rams, Chris Long.
At 6-foot-6, 313 pounds, Long has ideal size for the tackle position with 33 3/8” arms.
As an athlete, it’s tough to find much better than Long on the offensive line. Impressive speed getting to the second level and pulling. He’s quick out of his stance and shows great lateral agility as he slides to protect the edge.
From a physical perspective, Long checks all the boxes in the strength category. Strong hands with overall solid musculature. Thick in the lower body with better than average flexibility. Natural bender that could be the prototype for a zone tackle or guard.
Long’s ability to beat the defender to edge plays to his favor and detriment at times. The quickest of ends is going to struggle to beat him with speed off the edge. Long will overset the edge and get beat inside on occasion. He has great lateral agility and doesn’t cross his feet. Natural knee bender that can re-anchor against more powerful defenders. Strong hands that is tough to disengage from when he’s locked in. Troubles came at tackle when teams overloaded to his side. He really struggled diagnosing extra rushers.
Long’s footspeed is incredible in getting to the second level. When he gets there it’s a different story. Long struggles to break down in space and left his feet too often, causing him to whiff on key blocks at the second level. May struggle as a guard at the next level due to leverage issues. Stands upright off the snap and loses leverage battles against guys that can easily get under his pads. All that said, he can be a dominate run blocker showing plus speed and power at the point of attack. Once Long has his defender engaged, he showed he was virtually unstoppable with a nasty disposition about his game.
As expected from a player that played one year of major college football, splitting time between guard and tackle, Long is raw in terms of technique. These issues are easily correctable and come from lack of experience on the offensive line. His skill set screams left tackle as he looks like a fish out of water on the inside.
Long will have plenty of questions to answer about his DUI and maturity issues that led to him exiting Florida State. By all accounts, Long has done his due diligence in ensuring he’s dotted all the “I’s” and crossed all the “T’s” on correcting these issues.
Kyle Long can fairly be labeled as an inexperienced player but his ability to play two positions in a fairly complex system shows that the learning curve may not take as long as some expect. He’s a natural fit at left tackle that has huge upside with good coaching at the next level. With his athleticism, he is an ideal fit in a zone-blocking scheme. Long will be taken on day two of the draft and it wouldn’t surprise if he came off the board early in round two.
POSSIBLE LANDING SPOTS: Philadelphia Eagles, Detroit Lions, Arizona Cardinals, Miami Dolphins, Carolina Panthers, San Diego Chargers, Houston Texans, Dallas Cowboys