Last year, amid a season in which the Dolphins yielded 58 sacks, some fans (many on this blog, so I'm talking to you) continually ripped former Dolphins general manager Jeff Ireland for letting Jake Long go in free agency.
And many of you ripped me for advocating beforehand that Ireland should let Long go in free agency if the price to keep him was too high.
Well, with he Rams coming to town Thursday, and Long being part of that club, I think it is time to assess what that move has meant for the Dolphins and the Rams.
For the Rams the signing of Long to a four-year, $34 million deal has been a mixed blessing. Yes, he's been a starter for them -- which is what one should expect of an $8.5 million per year player.
But last year he finished the season on injured reserve. Which is where he finished the season for the Dolphins in 2012. And 2011.
He's back this year and started at left tackle last week against Cleveland.
And this happened:
Long, attempting to block defensive end Armonty Bryant, whiffed on the block. And Bryant hit quarterback Sam Bradford. In the knee. The same knee that had ACL repair last year.
And now that same knee needs ACL repair again.
And Bradford is out for the season.
Because, well, Jake Long.
The Dolphins, meanwhile, were actually better in 2013 without Long than they were in 2012 with Long -- 7-9 in '12 and 8-8 without Long.
And, yes, there were those 58 sacks. And yes, the idea of Jonathan Martin playing left tackle was a bust.
But the idea of paying Long $8.5 million? Not good. Even the Rams have already drafted Greg Robinson out of Auburn and he is the future at left tackle for that team.
And Miami has come out of that tough time. Branden Albert is the team's new left tackle and has not yielded a sack this preseason.
Let's just say Ryan Tannehill's knees are intact.