Long Brothers happy to move on

EARTH CITY, Mo. -- Winding down after a hotly contested, controversy filled 42-21 victory against the Chicago Bears, St. Louis Rams defensive end Chris Long felt plenty of emotions wash over him.

Long was happy to contribute to an impressive win and proud of his teammates for handling all that was thrown at them in a roller-coaster game. Most of all, he was relieved that a week in which he and brother/opponent Kyle took center stage was finally over.

The always open and honest Chris Long made it clear that he didn’t particularly like being the main storyline with his brother all week even though he understood how unique the situation was.

“It sucked,” Chris said. “Nobody wants to do that. It’s a blessing we are both here but this week was hell.”

For the better part of last week, the Long Brothers answered question after question about their relationship while also trying to maintain focus on a game that was big for both teams.

Always cooperative with the media, the Longs dutifully answered everything thrown their way even the repeated questions about the same topics.

“You all were doing your jobs, I mean that’s a slam-dunk story but at the same time for me, I am trying to be a productive part of this football team to help us win and not create a distraction so it’s a tight rope you want to walk,” Chris said. “You want to talk about it but at the same time you want everybody to know how focused you are on beating the Bears. Hopefully we were able to do that. I thought I did my job today and we came out with a win so I’m happy with that.”

For all of the hype and buildup for a matchup featuring brothers that actually presented the possibility for them to have physical confrontations, there was only one notable meeting and it actually came on a play Chris started on the sideline rather than lined up across from Kyle.

With 8:59 to go in the first half, Chicago quarterback Josh McCown attempted to throw a pass to the right to fullback Tony Fiammetta but Rams linebacker Jo-Lonn Dunbar hit him as he threw.

The ball fell incomplete but the officials never blew the whistle so the play went on and Rams cornerback Trumaine Johnson scooped up the ball. Johnson was tackled by his facemask but meanwhile Rams defensive end William Hayes had made a move to block McCown given that the play wasn’t blown dead.

Kyle Long took offense to that and went after Hayes and the two began wrestling on the ground. Without hesitation, Chris Long came flying off the Rams' bench to get his brother off Hayes and defuse the situation.

It wasn’t exactly an appealing situation for the elder Long.

“It’s tough,” Chris Long said. “One of your best friends and your brother. Like I said, during the game, yeah, you think about it but it’s not the first time I’ve restrained him. I think both of those big strong guys probably needed to be restrained there. They’re two of the strongest people I know. I’m just glad everybody got out of there OK.”

Kyle Long was lucky to get out of the fracas without being ejected after attempting to kick Hayes though he did get an unnecessary roughness penalty.

“You can’t lose your cool, and I lost my cool,” Kyle Long said.

Referee Jerome Boger was asked after the game why Kyle Long wasn’t ejected.

“I was one of the covering officials on that play,” Boger said. “And what I had on the unnecessary roughness call was for piling on, that he piled onto a player already on the ground. I didn’t see a kick by him.”

Of course, the whole incident could have been prevented had Boger or someone on his staff actually blown the play dead when the incomplete pass hit the ground.