Chris Long played a significant part in the New England Patriots’ run to yet another Super Bowl title. The defensive end came to the team on a one-year deal last offseason, but made a lasting impact. Even though he only played 15 snaps in the title game, his contributions were essential to the team’s victory. They will go down as his final contributions for the team, as the veteran announced he would test the free agency market.

Instagram announcement

On Wednesday, Long took to Instagram to announce his decision not to pursue a new deal with the Patriots and thank the fans for their support. He also thanked his teammates and coaches for the year he spent in New England.

He was honest, however, with where he wanted to go with his career. Another team may give him the opportunity to play a major part on a roster once again.

His most valuable contribution to the Patriots defense came in the Super Bowl. In the game, the pass rusher played just 15 snaps. One of those snaps, however, drew a holding penalty that knocked the Atlanta Falcons out of field goal range and allowed New England to stay within striking distance. It was all the push Long and his team needed to secure an overtime victory.

A 'Long' career

Long signed a one-year deal with the Patriots last season, bringing a sense of professionalism and hard work to the locker room. He started at the beginning of the year but was eventually relegated to the role of a situational pass rusher.

Still, he recorded 35 tackles and four sacks during his regular season in New England.

Long, the son of Hall of Famer Howie Long, was selected by the St. Louis Rams with the second pick in the 2008 NFL Draft and spent his entire career with the team prior to his year in New England. He made the NFL All-Rookie Team during his first year in the league.

Over the course of his career, he has recorded 281 tackles, 58.5 sacks, and nine forced fumbles. He will be 32 years old by the start of next season, but there will definitely be teams interested in seeing if he can start in the league once again.

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