NFL

Eagles sign undrafted rookie LB Travis Long

7/30/13 in NFL   |   Mia781   |   953 respect

Shortly after the Philadelphia Eagles got confirmation on Jason Phillips’ ACL tear which will force him to sit out the entire 2013 season on the injured reserve, the team moved quickly to add depth to their linebackers group. The Eagles signed rookie linebacker Travis Long to a free agent contract, the team announced Monday.
 
The 6-fooy-4, 245-pound Long was a decorated college defender, consistent starter (47 games) and a four-time all-conference selection during his entire career at Washington State. Long complied 201 career tackles (141 solo) and 20.5 sacks which ranked as the sixth-most in school history. He also posted 42 tackles for a loss (fourth-most in school history), forced four fumbles, broke up 10 passes and intercepted one pass during his Washington State career. Long also led the Cougars in tackles for loss through all four seasons and posted team-high in sacks during each of his final three seasons.
 
Long never missed a game until last season, when his 2012 campaign was cut short to just 11 games after suffering an ACL tear. As a senior, Long earned honorable All Pac-12 mention honors and was named the Cougars' defensive MVP after finishing with 42 tackle (13 for a loss), 9.5 sacks and one forced fumble last season. He was also presented with Laurie Niemi Award in his final season, which is given to the given to the senior who best shows courage and attitude.
 
However, Long went undrafted in April, largely due to the ACL injury he suffered last November. Long was unable to work out at the Cougars’ Pro Day and is still recovering from surgery to repair the ACL tear. His biggest obstacle this offseason will remain will be to display great durability in a training camp which has already suffered the loss of two players due to ACL injuries. However, at just 22, Long still has a lot of mileage left on his legs; and at least for now he gets an opportunity to be on an NFL roster irrespective of whatever may be his chance of staying on the team going into the regular season.
 
Long gives the Eagles a versatile option at outside linebacker in their new 3-4 defensive scheme, playing everywhere for the Cougars  – including inside linebacker and defensive end. He is also only the third outside linebacker on the Eagles’ roster, behind Connor Barwin and Everette Brown, who has experience in a 3-4 scheme (as a defensive end, before Cougars made the switch to a 3-4 system under new head coach Mike Leach).
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