Season Preview Question #1 - Which Player's Easiest to Root For?

USA TODAY Sports

In this nine-part series, we'll go up and down the team looking at the roster in a couple of difference aspects. First up, likeability.

We're compiling responses at the HQ level to nine questions for each SBN NFL community. I'll be putting mine out one at a time to see how you guys would answer.

First up:

Who is the easiest player on the roster to root for?

There were a couple of candidates for me, and one clear winner here. The options:

Sam Bradford

Sam's had to deal with a lack of consistency among the coaching ranks and a lack of talent across the offense to this point in his career. We've seen the kind of inconsistency that's produced on the field despite the obvious natural talents Sam has. Being the QB, he'll always be the face of the franchise. It's not out of bounds to see 2013 as the year Sam really imprints himself on the league nationally. I's expect he'd be in in most of yalls top 3.

Daryl Richardson

Small school guy who works hard, keeps his head down and doesn't cause a ruckus. Everyone loves a yeoman.

Tavon Austin

This. Next.

Rodger Saffold

Saff's dealt with injuries his whole career. It's unfortunate. He's skilled, and he's certainly committed (see: not Alex Barron). Honestly, I'd like to see him have a good 2013 on the right side and establish himself as a capable RT. I hope I'm not alone in that.

Robert Quinn/Michael Brockers

Being good at football and good-natured is a strong combination when it comes to fan favoritism.

James Laurinaitis

Who doesn't like Animal, Jr.?

Janoris Jenkins

#StripClubReady is part wild personal life of a young NFL player, part 2032 presidential campaign slogan.


But my clear pick for easiest player to root for?

Chris Long

Affable. Funny. Earnest.

There are many descriptors you could attach to Chris Long, very few of them negative.

When opposing coaches refer to you as "a rolling ball of butcher knives", you're doing something right. For Long to have racked up 24.5 sacks in his last two years, it's fair to say he's made good on his #2 overall selection back in the 2008 NFL Draft, now being teammates with the only player to precede him in that draft, LT Jake Long.

He may not be the most seasoned veteran on the defensive side of the ball, but he's the heart and soul on the field when the Rams are without the ball. Locked up through 2016, he's not going anywhere any time soon. That's a good thing. Because when you talk about who's on this roster that I want to root for every week for the foreseeable future, Chris Long stands out for me.

Now to work on his Smack Cam awareness...

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