Report: Chris Long signs with Patriots hours after Chandler Jones trade

The Patriots, perhaps more than any other organization in the NFL, have an amazing knack for taking players discarded from terrible teams and helping them revive their careers. Last month, in a surprising move, the Rams cut longtime defensive end Chris Long. And now, in a development that should come as a surprise to no one, the Pats have signed Long to a one-year deal, reports ESPN's Trey Wingo.

The news comes hours after the Patriots shipped 26-year-old pass rusher Chandler Jones to Arizona in exchange for guard Jonathan Cooper and the Cardinals' 2016 second-round pick.

Chris Long is headed to New England. (USATSI)
Chris Long is headed to New England. (USATSI)

The Rams parted ways with Long, who will be 31 later this month, because of his hefty contract and recent lack of production -- though most of that can be attributed to injuries. To Long's credit, he took full responsibility in an Instagram post to fans shortly after he was let go.

"Bottom line is this is a production business," he wrote. "No excuses, the last two years have been s---. It's been painful to experience because I care deeply about my performance and responsibility to my teammates."

Meanwhile, Long's addition means the Patriots have a reasonably priced, if short-term, solution along the defensive line; Jones' contract is up after the 2016 season and he will be looking at a substantial pay bump, one the Pats apparently weren't interested in taking on. If Long plays well, he could sign another short-term deal to stay in New England, or, worst case, the team now has 18 months to restock the position.

To recap: The Pats bolster a leaky offensive line, add another second-round pick to their '16 draft haul (they were stripped of their first-rounder because of the Deflategate silliness), and have found a quick fix along the defensive line.

And in that sense, Long really has won the lottery.

CBS Sports Writer

Ryan Wilson has been an NFL writer for CBS Sports since June 2011, and he's covered five Super Bowls in that time. Ryan previously worked at AOL's FanHouse from start to finish, and Football Outsiders... Full Bio

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