The Jake Long Era in Miami is potentially down to its final days, so let’s revisit one last time Bill Parcells’ infamous draft-day decision that changed the direction of two franchises. The Dolphins took Jake Long with the first overall pick in 2008. The Falcons selected Matt Ryan third, and then traded up to grab tackle Sam Baker at No. 21. The Falcons had their franchise quarterback. The Dolphins? They’ve since used high picks on three QBs, including Chad Henne later in the 2008 draft. And, with no lack of irony, the Dolphins could replace Long with the Baker, who was the seventh of eight tackles taken in the first round this year. Back then, it was considered a draft class rich at tackle. Five years on, it looks even better. This year’s free agent group is littered with members of the Class of ’08. Long and Baker are available. So is Gosder Cherilus. Ryan Clady and Branden Albert would have gotten monster deals if they hadn’t been franchised. (Sebastian Vollmer and Andre Smith are also on the market, but both entered the league in 2009).
Falcons’ Sam Baker an option if Jake Long leaves
Miami Herald | Mar 9