Chris Long flew under the radar while playing for a Virginia team that went 5-7 in 2006 and has spent most of his life in the shadow if his father Howie, a Hall of Fame defensive lineman. That will change over the next few months, however. Long is college football's premier defensive talent and everything NFL scouts look for while searching for the next perennial Pro Bowl defensive end. His combination of size, power, quickness and tenacity should land him a spot on every All-America team in existence and make him a top-five pick in the 2008 draft.
Tommy Blake of TCU is undersized but fast and plays the game with a non-stop motor. Long is more of a DE/DT hybrid, while Blake could play either weakside end in a 4-3 scheme or rush linebacker in a 3-4 system at the next level. Either way, Blake could be the only senior defensive end to join Long in the first round.
Fellow end Kendall Langford is looking to carry on the tradition of Hampton players making the NFL. Justin Durant (second round, Jaguars) was the only Pirate selected this year but the four other Hampton players who attended the scouting combine were signed as undrafted free agents.