It was an unfamiliar sight for the St. Louis Rams in 2014.
Chris Long, who had never missed a game in his prior six seasons, was injured in the season opener. He went on to miss the next 10 contests after undergoing ankle surgery.
Long returned for the remaining five weeks of the regular season, but he was out of sorts. He never fully recovered from the surgery. The former second overall pick in the 2008 NFL Draft was still rehabbing into the offseason.
More from FoxSports
"It's been a grind," Long said, via the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. "Mentally, really a grind because you're just like, man, I want to be myself again."
The question is whether Long can return to pre-injury form?
He maintains his foot is fine, but he's been slowed by back problems recently.
Long also turns 31 in January and holds a cap number of $14.25 million in 2016. Is he part of the team's long-term plans? The Rams also have Williams Hayes and Eugene Sims behind Long and Quinn, respectively. This year could perhaps be a make-or-break season.
But if Long can play at the level he is expected, the Rams' front line will be that much more potent.
(h/t St. Louis-Dispatch)