It shouldn’t be surprising that former Bears Pro Bowl offensive lineman Kyle Long has found success in sports media. What might be surprising is his biggest influence in his second career.
Even with his father, Howie, serving as an analyst for “Fox NFL Sunday” and his older brother, Chris, producing a top-100 sports podcast, Kyle often turns to his mother, Diane, for help.
“Obviously, my dad, Hall of Famer, Super Bowl champion, in the media, he was a great source of comfort for me in the league and in my transition,” Long said. “But for advice for the shows, I can call on my mom a lot more than I can call on my dad. She seems to have the human element figured out a lot better than most of us.”
Long has been putting her advice to work as a studio analyst for CBS Sports Network’s “That Other Pregame Show,” which aired Sunday mornings during the season. This Sunday, the show will air on CBS, kicking off the network’s Super Bowl pregame coverage at 10:30 a.m. Long joins former Raiders CEO Amy Trask, former linebacker London Fletcher, NFL insider Jonathan Jones and host Adam Schein.
The show isn’t Long’s first foray into the industry. A year ago, he co-hosted for three days on David Kaplan’s old midday show on ESPN 1000, and it was a breakout performance. Obviously, Long was at his best talking football, but he held his own with other topics. Most important, he sounded as though he had been talking for a living for years. He was personable, well-spoken and prepared.
“He showed up with ideas, with notes; he didn’t just mail it in,” Kaplan said. “If he chooses to do sports radio — or personality radio, as I like to call it because it’s more than just sports — that guy can be a superstar. He has everything.”
Long can thank brother Chris for help with that. Chris preceded Kyle in the NFL and shared his experiences on and off the field.
“He just said, ‘Be yourself. Everybody else is taken,’ ” Long said. “And I’ve taken that to heart. I’ve found that, more often than not, it’s been a good thing when I’ve been myself. I’m confident in the person that I am.”