New sun Ben Long has earned the praise of his co-captain after his first pre-season at the club, ready to make the backline his permanent home after an unsteady few years at Moorabbin.

Long travelled north to join the Suns in 2022's trade period after six years at St Kilda, featuring in 19 games last season, a career high.

The 25-year-old has impressed in his time at the Suns so far, with the club eager for depth down back after a series of injuries in 2022.

Speaking at Captain's Day, Jarrod Witts spoke highly of Long's pre-season efforts after arriving at the club.

"He's going to be really important for us down back," Witts told Zero Hanger.

"Especially early on we get some guys coming back from some longer term injuries. He's been really strong in the in the preseason.

"He's had some pretty difficult matchups throughout the game, so been loving playing with him. He brings a hard edge to the way he plays and has been a great addition."

Witts also praised young sun Sam Flanders, who is ready to find a new level heading into his fourth season in the competition.

Flanders was drafted with pick 11 in the 2019 draft, managing 30 games so far in his young career, but Witts has revealed the 21-year-old has had a "massive" pre-season.

"I think in terms of guys who have just organically grown within our footy club Sam Flanders has had a massive preseason has been really impressive, but then he's also having to translate parts of that into games, as well," Witts added.

So looking forward to him adding to our midfield for depth and drive."

The Gold Coast Suns will begin their season on Saturday, March 18 against Sydney at Heritage Bank Stadium.