Falcons sign Jake Long to fortify offensive line

The Falcons’ never-ending quest to improve the talent along the offensive line led to the signing of former No. 1 overall draft pick Jake Long on Tuesday, Falcons coach Dan Quinn announced.

Long, who had two workouts with the Falcons, is expected to compete for the right tackle spot with Ryan Schraeder.

For now, Long will serve as a reserve swing tackle. The Falcons waived safety Charles Godfrey to make room for Long.

“I think we’d rather go through the practice as see where he’s at,” Quinn said. “But no, I wouldn’t (expect him to play against the Giants on Sunday). I’m not expecting that, but I am excited to have his competitiveness and toughness. For a guy (to say,) ‘I just want a chance to compete.’ I certainly have a lot of respect for how he goes about his business.”

Long will get a chance to play some left and right tackle for the Falcons, Quinn said.

“We’re excited to have him here,” Quinn said. “We’ll get him up to speed as fast as we can. Then, we’ll cross that bridge about where, after that.”

Long, who was the No. 1 overall pick in the 2008 NFL draft, had his second workout for the Falcons last Thursday.

The Falcons wanted to see the progress that he’s made since they worked him a little over a month ago.

Two picks after Long was selected back in 2008, the Falcons picked quarterback Matt Ryan.

The Falcons currently have Jake Matthews at left tackle and Ryan Schraeder at right tackle. Tackles Tyler Polumbus and Bryce Harris are on the roster. Pierce Burton is on the practice squad. Also, Lamar Holmes in on reserved/physically unable to perform list.

Long is a four-time Pro Bowler and one-time All-Pro selection. Long, who is recovering from his second ACL tear, was cut by the Rams in March in a salary cap move that saved them $8 million.

Long was once considered one of the best tackles in the NFL, but the injuries have slowed down his career. He has finished each of the past four seasons on injured reserve.