The Washington Redskins needed guard Spencer Long after starting center Kory Lichtensteiger went out of the Giants game with an injury. Long answered the call and played in a 29-27 victory.
To say the game between the Washington Redskins and New York Giants on Sunday was a physical one would be putting it mildly.
Throughout the course of the contest, the Redskins suffered personnel losses, among them being starting center Kory Lichtensteiger, who left in the second half with a calf injury and never returned. With Lichtensteiger out, that meant Spencer Long had to step in during a pretty intense game and handle the load at center.
Long got a chance to watch some game tape in the Redskins locker room following the team's 29-27 win over the Giants, and, for the most part, Long was pleased with what he was able to do in a tough situation on the road.
"I think there are definitely things I can improve on," Long said. "The main thing is I was ready to go; I was prepared. But when I watch the tape [again], I know I'm going to have some stuff I'm going to need to work on. Just got to get better from here and we'll see."
Before Long sits down to digest the game film a second time, he already has an idea of some things he needs to work on in practice this week in preparation for their Week Four opponent, the Cleveland Browns.
"Some stuff in the run game I think I could've done better with my reaches and stuff," Long said. "[The Giants] had a good jump on the snap count, but again, we'll see what the tape says, and see if I could critique my technique and stuff like that when the time comes. We'll know more after the film has been watched."
Long doesn't have a ton of experience at the center position, having taken some reps at second-team center during the offseason program, but that's pretty much the extent of his work in the middle.
Just because he's not as experienced as Lichtensteiger is at the position doesn't mean that Long wasn't ready when his number was called on Sunday afternoon.
"This is the NFL, man. If you're not prepared to come in when you're asked to do a job, that's on you," Long said. "You prepare every week like you're going to play, and even though I wasn't going to start this week, I prepare like I am. So if something like this happens, unfortunately, then I'm ready to go. You never know what can happen in the league; this is a rough sport, [a] physical sport."
It was a battle of attrition on Washington's offensive line on Sunday. In addition to Lichtensteiger going out, left guard Shawn Lauvao suffered an ankle injury in the first half and didn't return, causing even more shuffling across the line.
Long had nothing but respect for both men, who fought a valiant fight before being replaced.
"Heart goes out to Kory and Shawn," Long said. "Two battlers, ballers; very good leaders on this offensive line. Heart goes out to them. I'm just proud we got the 'W' for them and this team."