Gunn: Graham Has Emerged Into A Front Line Player In NFL
When the Eagles hired Defensive Coordinator Jim Schwartz, the team changed their defensive scheme from a 3-4 to a 4-3 Defense and the expectation that this change would help players like Brandon Graham and Fletcher Cox be more impactful. Despite his regular statistics not being eye catching in 2016 with 41 Tackles, 5.5 Sacks, and Two Forced Fumbles, he led the NFL in Hurries with 40 while Pro Football Focus called him Underrated. Graham started the 2017 on a high note with Two Sacks, Three Solo Tackles and the key Forced Fumble that led to Fletcher Cox Fumble Recovery and Defensive Touchdown. It was seven years ago that the Eagles drafted Graham in the first round of the 2010 NFL Draft ahead of more well known players such as Earl Thomas, Jason Pierre-Paul, Maurkice Pouncey, and Dez Bryant.
CSN Philly Eagles Reporter Derrick Gunn joined The Sports Bash on Tuesday and discussed the development of Brandon Graham:
“The thing I like most about Brandon Graham is his honesty and he has told us time and time again, when you look at when he was here and in his first few years how inconsistent he was, how nicked up he was all the time, he heard all the negative comments and he got to a point where he joked that he blocked a whole lot of people on Twitter and that included a lot media people as well. But the last couple years he has really emerged into a front line player in the NFL and as far as I’m concerned he’s the best Defensive Lineman they have….A lot of things that Brandon Graham does it doesn’t show up in the stats but when you look at him coming off the edge and beating his man one-on-one situations, right now nobody does it better (or more) consistently for the Eagles than Brandon Graham. It took him a few years longer maybe than he wanted to and the organization wanted to for him to emerge into that player that they thought he would be coming out of (University of) Michigan. But the bottom line is you know this is a game where you don’t have a lot of patience with players, you’re always looking for somebody new, you’re always looking for somebody better; but in Brandon Graham’s situation, Howie Roseman and the organization had that patience and because of that patience it is finally paying off for them.”
Checkout what Gunn had to say about the Eagles signing a new Kicker with Caleb Sturgis injured, Tim Jernigan fit in Jim Schwartz defense, and perspective on Eagles offense