Unwanted Graham Is Healthy And ReadyJune 23rd, 2012
So it goes for older running backs, especially those that are banged up; the NFL rudely kicks them to the curb and routinely seems disinterested in what they have to offer.
Earnest Graham, 32, falls into that boat but says he’s healthy now after his Achilles tear in London last season, so he told the Fort Myers News-Press. Though Graham is a man without a team.
“I’m spending a lot of time with my family,” Graham said. “If something opens up in the NFL, I’ll consider it.”
A ruptured Achilles tendon injury shortened Graham’s season in 2011. He played in just seven games, starting two at fullback. He finished with 206 yards on 37 carries (5.6 yards per carry) and caught 26 passes for 163 yards.
“I feel fine,” Graham said of his health. “I’m running around well. If training camp started today, I’d be able to do it.”
Graham said he would be open to playing for a team other than Tampa Bay. Although he has not met new coach Greg Schiano, Graham said he could envision playing again for the Buccaneers, perhaps as a midseason signee should any of the team’s backs suffer injuries.
One would think Graham wouldn’t fit the mold of the cast aside NFL running back, given how versatile Graham is. He plays special teams, fullback, catches the ball well, can fill in on any down, and he’s got the A+ work ethic. Teamless Cadillac Williams, 30, for example, doesn’t have nearly the same skillset.
Joe suspects Graham will get a few phone calls at some point, if his agent is actively burning up the phone lines.