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5 Things to Know About Vikings New T Jake Long

EDEN PRAIRIE, Minn. — The Vikings on Tuesday announced the **signing of tackle** Jake Long, who was the No. 1 overall pick in the 2008 NFL Draft.

The 31-year-old Long, a former standout at the University of Michigan, has 96 career starts and has previously played for the Miami Dolphins (2008-12), St. Louis Rams (2013-14) and Atlanta Falcons (2015).

The Vikings added Long after right tackle Andre Smith was placed on injured reserve with a triceps injury.

Here are five things to know about the newest Minnesota Viking:


1. Nice to see you again

Long's arrival in Minnesota means he is reunited with a handful of familiar faces. Vikings offensive line coach Tony Sparano was in his first of four seasons as Dolphins head coach when Miami drafted Long with the first pick in 2008. Long later played in St. Louis for the Rams, where he blocked for current Vikings quarterbacks Sam Bradford and Shaun Hill.


2. Strong start

The 6-foot-7 Long spent the first five seasons of his career in Miami, where he made 74 starts for the Dolphins. He opened his career with four straight selections to the Pro Bowl and an All-Pro season in 2010.


3. In elite company

Long is just one of four offensive tackles to be drafted first overall. He was the third player at the position to be drafted at No. 1 overall before the Chiefs took Eric Fisher in the top spot in 2013. The first offensive tackle to be selected No. 1 was Ron Yary, whom the Vikings nabbed in 1968. Yary, a member of the Vikings Ring of Honor, made 180 career starts in Minnesota and was elected to the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 2001.

View images of the Vikings new tackle Jake Long from his days with the Atlanta Falcons, St. Louis Rams and Miami Dolphins.

4. Michigan Man

Long, a Michigan native, starred for the Wolverines during his college career. Long started 40 games for Michigan and was the Big Ten Offensive Lineman of the Year in 2006 and 2007. Long, a two-time All-American with the Wolverines, was the second Wolverine to be drafted first overall (halfback Tom Harmon was the first in 1941).


5. Putting things in perspective

In June of 2004, Long escaped a fire that destroyed the home he shared with eight other Michigan football players. Long, who was hospitalized for five days for smoke inhalation, made it out of the house by jumping out a window and landing on a teammate's car. Long was named to the All-Big Ten Second Team the following season.

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