Chris Long: I knew Aaron Donald was a Hall of Famer at his first training camp

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The recently retired defensive end Chris Long was in his seventh season with the Rams when they drafted Aaron Donald in 2014. He knew as soon as they started practicing together just how great Donald would be.

Long told the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review that seeing Donald’s combination of talent and hard work at the first training camp of his career was an eye-opening experience.

“We used to joke his rookie camp that he was going to be in the Hall of Fame, but I kind of wasn’t joking,” Long said.

Donald’s physical talents were obvious, but Long said Donald’s mental approach to the game was equally impressive.

“I’ve never seen anybody work so hard, who had so much talent and play so violent and play with such tenacity,” he said. “This guy would fight you on the field at the drop of a hat, and I respect that about him, and outworks everybody. I would be the last person in the film room usually at the end of camp, and I would go in there and watch tape once everybody was at home. I started going in there an opening the door and turning the lights on to find my pen or notebook, and he was in there every night.”

Long saw a lot during his 11-year career, but Donald was unique.

26 responses to “Chris Long: I knew Aaron Donald was a Hall of Famer at his first training camp

  1. People were comparing him to John Randle and Geno Atkins before he was even drafted. I remember Howie Long saying he could be a 15 sack a year player. Laid waste to the NCAA, dominated the Senior Bowl, blew up the combine, dazzled at his pro day…

    Couldn’t believe he was still there for the 13th pick of the draft.

  2. “I would be the last person in the film room usually at the end of camp,” I love the way these guys always tell you how hard working they were

  3. His athleticism, raw power and hard work, coupled with his off the field contributions to society. I will venture a guess that he will pick up more than a few awards along the route to the HOF.

  4. Long also said he knew Brady would be a Hall of Famer after watching him at Michigan. At the time, Long was going through his tough childhood, living in a mansion and being spoiled.

  5. The eye ball test is real. All of that film stuff makes a good story but when I see him it’s serious how he moves humans from point A to point B with ease AND rushes the QB. He has one GOAT to chase and that is Reggie “The Minister of Defense” White, period.

  6. Wow Chris NO love/accolades for your ex mate Fletcher Cox (fyi he is not too shabby either)…..just sayin

  7. Game changer? Couldn’t get to old man Brady at all (well, not until after the ball’s long gone and Brady was just stood there so a frustrated Donald ragdolled him – luckily ref let him off).

  8. Liberalsruineverything says:
    June 27, 2019 at 8:00 am

    I knew I didn’t care about Chris Longs opinion on anything the first time I heard him speak.
    ————————————————————————————-
    Was it all the money he donated that upset you? Would you have preferred he spent it all on golf and gold plated toilets?

  9. mybigthirdleg says:
    June 27, 2019 at 8:19 am
    Long also said he knew Brady would be a Hall of Famer after watching him at Michigan. At the time, Long was going through his tough childhood, living in a mansion and being spoiled.

    __________

    I find it fascinating that people try to take this angle on Long, as if to downplay the level of commitment and work ethic it takes to become a professional athlete at the highest level. So he grew up wealthy. Who cares? I didn’t grow up wealthy, but I don’t find any reason to resent the guy for it. I hope you eventually find satisfaction in your life.

  10. and the Giants in desperate need of interior pass rush decided to take flashy WR OBJ.

  11. amaf21 says:
    June 27, 2019 at 7:34 am
    Oh this guy again. Yawn.

    ————

    Given the train wrecks that are around in the NFL, Donald is boring in the best possible way.

  12. ybigthirdleg says:
    June 27, 2019 at 8:19 am
    Long also said he knew Brady would be a Hall of Famer after watching him at Michigan. At the time, Long was going through his tough childhood, living in a mansion and being spoiled.

    ———-

    One thing about the NFL. You can’t make it as a player based on nepotism. If you can’t play you won’t be on the field. Chris Long is a great player.

    Also, nothing wrong with your parents being successful at their profession. Chris is fortunate that he could learn from his dad, who is still working hard every week.

  13. carloswlassiter says:
    June 27, 2019 at 9:18 am
    Liberalsruineverything says:
    June 27, 2019 at 8:00 am

    I knew I didn’t care about Chris Longs opinion on anything the first time I heard him speak.
    ————————————————————————————-
    Was it all the money he donated that upset you? Would you have preferred he spent it all on golf and gold plated toilets?
    ————————————

    I couldn’t care less what he does with HIS money. I do care that he supports politicians that want take all of MY money.

  14. Chris long is all class. Only people with a problem regarding him got hurt feelings via the eagles and pats. Donald’s a monster and long is right.

  15. I wanted my Cowboys to draft this guy so bad, it was obvious to me coming out of college
    he would dominate at the next level..

    huge fan and really love watching him play

  16. Chris Long is one of the guys that gives football players a good name. We hear all the negative headlines, and then we hear that Long donates his entire salary to helping the less fortunate. He’s a real life version of the stories they used to tell me in Sunday School. Here’s the funny thing about Long’s story about Aaron Donald. I felt the same exact way the first time I saw Howie Long play. Yes, Chris Long’s dad. It was a pre-season game against the 49ers and I’d never seen a guy with a motor like Howie’s. Still haven’t to this day. Chris Long should know a thing or two about HOF D-Linemen. He’s the son of one of the greatest.

  17. CL is a class act and a fantastic humanitarian. Nothing but love for that guy. Stud with the Rams as well. Wish him the best in retirement

  18. mybigthirdleg says:
    June 27, 2019 at 8:19 am
    Long also said he knew Brady would be a Hall of Famer after watching him at Michigan. At the time, Long was going through his tough childhood, living in a mansion and being spoiled.

    ——————————-
    So you think he was wrong?

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