Unwanted Graham Is Healthy And Ready

June 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.

13 Responses to “Unwanted Graham Is Healthy And Ready”

  1. Dini's Biceps Says:

    Hope he gets a shot but not with the Bucs. Ready for new blood. Thanks for your service Mr. Graham…..you are a class act!

  2. Garv Says:

    Loved singing “Graham on the RUN” after his carries on Sundays.
    The man was a dedicated Buccaneer, worked hard, a team player and indeed a class act.
    If he does end up playing somewhere else, I hope he comes back to retire a Buccaneer. He deserves that honor IMO.

    Buccaneers in 2012?

    Can’t WAIT!!!

  3. Chris@Apple Roof Cleaning Tampa Says:

    Graham IMHO could have been a star in the NFL, had he not been in Tampa all his career. The Ex Gator was not used correctly here, for some reason.
    I wish him only the best, and he leaves Tampa with my respect.

  4. Dini's Biceps Says:

    3 years in a row…..Bucs are the youngest team in the NFL (same this year too). Plus, they still average the most salary cap room <—– NOTHING has CHANGED

  5. SilenceTheCritics Says:

    Dont forget fans still crying over the salary cap… your right not a dam thing has changed.

  6. Thomas2.2 Says:

    Graham’s 1 start last year was the team’s best running back performance of the year last year. Look at EG stats vs the Saints in a Bucs win and LB’s stats vs the Saints in a Bucs loss.

    Olson wasn’t afraid to hand the ball to EG (bc he was effective and knew the plays).

    The team performed better running the ball and on offense with EG at RB over Blount – albeit on a smallish sample due to injury.

    Expect the same with Muscle Hamp this year.

  7. Santos Says:

    Dinis bicep, give it a rest man, go root for another team. You are the worst bucs “fan” I’ve ever come a across.

  8. Dan Says:

    Joe, after reading some of these responses I have to throw in a Billy Madison quote:

    “Principal: Mr. Madison, what you’ve just said is one of the most insanely idiotic things I have ever heard. At no point in your rambling, incoherent response were you even close to anything that could be considered a rational thought. Everyone in this room is now dumber for having listened to it. I award you no points, and may God have mercy on your soul. ”

    Nothing has changed? What planet do you guys live on? Let’s see we signed arguably one of the best lineman in the NFL. Not just best guard, BEST LINEMAN. Not in the Division. Not in the NFC. In the NFL. Then we signed a bonafide #1 receiver who, if he can stay healthy, is a top 10 receiver if not top 5. He certainly has the ability (not just potential, ability) to be one of the best receiver’s in the league. Finally in free agency, we sign a veteran starting corner, maybe not an elite corner but a decent physical starting corner.

    On to the draft, we draft a dominate college safety who we sorely needed. We haven’t been the same defense since we lost Lynch. Yeah our defense under Derrick Brook’s leadership still made it back to #1, but we didn’t have the same physical presence against the run and didn’t intimidate receivers across the middle and underneath coverage. Germain Phillips at times showed flashes when he settled in but he struggled to stay healthy and he still wasn’t a “Missile playing Safety” when healthy. I’m not saying Baron’s there yet but there is a good probability he could be. Then in the first round we draft a solid running back to complement our big boy Blount. That’s the type of backfield combo that wins championsips (See New York Giants 2011-2012 and 2006-2007 seasons). Then we pick up a sorely needed linebacker in Lavonte David in the 2nd round. Yes I know these guys have to prove they can play at an elite level. They look good on paper, but they have to prove it to us. The point is they have talent.

    So, let’s recount so far. We added two veterans that have made the Pro Bowl and another that is a solid starter. We added great talent from the draft. Oh I regress. I’m forgetting we purged faux leader Kellen Winslow. Addition by subtraction with that move. But I’m not done. We replaced him with a real leader in Dallas Clark, who unlike Winslow, plays bigger than his mouth. Did I mention he’s a Pro Bowler as well.

    Finally, we brought in a new coaching staff that knows how to teach, manage, and lead a team. Nothing has changed? That’s about as dumb a comment as the idiot faux reporter Joe posted on that cites Doug Martin’s college recruiting as a red flag on whether Doug Martin will be good or not. Please if your going to post something, please use a coherent thought. I started with it and I’ll end with it because it fits so well:

    “Principal: Mr. Madison, what you’ve just said is one of the most insanely idiotic things I have ever heard. At no point in your rambling, incoherent response were you even close to anything that could be considered a rational thought. Everyone in this room is now dumber for having listened to it. I award you no points, and may God have mercy on your soul. “

  9. espo Says:

    I’m not sold on our fullback situation and I’d love to see him in from of Blount and Martin next year. Sign him!

  10. Hawaiian Buc Says:

    Amazing how Dini’s biceps can say we are the youngest team in the league in freaking June!!!!! The roster isn’t close to being done genius. Second, we don’t have the lowest payroll, so you are completely full of it. Nice job by you.

  11. Miguel Grande Says:

    @Dan Love the quote and your verbosity. I don’t agree with all of your points.

    When we are reminded of a great Buccaneer, Ernest Graham, we are subjected to the lesson of what happens to undrafted free agents (Blount)when they compete against drafted players. Graham never had a chance until all of the drafted players went down with injuries, then and only then was he allowed to play.

    I am glad that he was signed to a pretty good contract eventually and was actually paid for his services before his devastating injury.

    Youngest team = cheapest owners

  12. Pete 422 Says:

    I like EG. Any idea what he will do after football is completely done?

  13. Patrick Says:

    Would’ve gotten the chance he deserved had he not been in Tampa. Graham was a damn good player that was horribly wasted.