By Mike Berardino
3:35 PM PDT, September 9, 2012
This wasn't a vintage performance from Jake Long.
The Miami Dolphins' Pro Bowl left tackle was whistled for a holding penalty by the replacement refs early in the second quarter of this 30-10 loss.
This happened after letting J.J. Watt blow by him on the play for a hard knockdown on rookie quarterback Ryan Tannehill.
Late in the fourth quarter, Long was beaten outside for a rare sack by former Michigan teammate Tim Jamison, who immediately downplayed his accomplishment.
"I beat him one time at the end of the game," said Jamison, a backup defensive end who did most of his rushing toward the inside.
Jamison also had one of four batted passes against Tannehill, his coming on fourth and goal from the Texans 5 with about four minutes left.
Did Jamison think Long's right knee was healthy or were the Texans taking advantage of a wounded warrior?
"He looked like he was 100 percent out there," Jamison said. "I heard about [the injury in practice two weeks ago]. I didn’t think he was going to play ,but I saw him out there and it didn’t look like it was bothering him. I couldn’t really tell. I felt like he was 100 percent."
Jamison, who was a year behind Long at Michigan, is no stranger to butting heads wtih Long.
"We went against each other in college," Jamison said. "He beat me a lot. I had the opportunity to beat him a couple times in one-on-one pass rush. Jake is an All-Pro, just a standup guy, on and off the field. I have a lot of respect for Jake, man. I was privileged to play college ball with Jake. He’s a great leader. I’m always proud to see him out there doing well."
Did Jamison use some of that knowledge or pass it along to his teammates to help get the best of Long on Sunday?
"You always have to study your opponent," Jamison said. "You have to know their strengths and weaknesses, although Jake Long really doesn’t have that many weaknesses. You got to fight to the end of the play. You never know what might happen."
For his part, Long credited the Texans' defensive line for causing disruption even when they couldn't get to the passer.
"They did a good job getting their hands up and batting them down," Long said. "We have to somehow get them down. On those quick throws, we know it's coming out quick, so we just have to work on getting their hands down. ... We got [Tannehill] pressured and hit too many times today."
No doubt, and Long would never use a physical issue as an excuse.
But still, you have to wonder anytime the franchise left tackle struggles the way he did at times Sunday.
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