Following the release of All-Pro DE Jason Babin, former Philadelphia Eagles head coach Andy Reid made it known that the move was made in order to give the team’s younger defensive linemen a chance to shine.
Well, Eagles DE Brandon Graham sure wasted no time in making a name for himself.
In his first game after the dismissal of Babin, the former first round draft pick tallied 1.5 sacks and six total tackles against the Dallas Cowboys in Week 13. Graham continued impressing for the remainder of the Eagles’ 2012 campaign, racking up 23 total tackles and four sacks in the squad’s final five games without Babin.
Graham did not quite live up to expectations in his first professional season, after he was drafted very high by the Eagles, with the 13th overall pick of the 2010 NFL Draft out of the University of Michigan.
To be fair, Graham did not really have much of an opportunity to show his worth in his first two NFL seasons, considering he was placed on the Injured Reserve (IR) with a torn ACL in Week 14 of his 2010 rookie year, and only played in three games during the 2011 season.
But now with Babin out the door, as well as Coach Reid, a whole new opportunity has been presented for Graham to show the Eagles why they selected him with such high hopes.
The Eagles could actually assist Graham by drafting another high-profile defensive lineman in this year’s 2013 NFL Draft, in order to take some of the pressure off of Graham on the defensive front.
There is no doubt in my mind that Graham is a great asset to the Eagles’ defensive unit, and will be a key factor in the team’s success for many years going forward.
And following a historically embarrassing 4-12 season, the Eagles need all of the help that they can get.
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