The Philadelphia Eagles are working on a contract extension for defensive end Brandon Graham, according to a report from NFL insider Jason La Canfora.
Graham is signed through 2018, but the Eagles realize his value to the team and are known for trying to extend their core players this time of year, before the season ends. They are hopeful of completing an extension for the pass rusher, and have an ongoing dialogue with his representatives. The Eagles gave an indication of their opinion of Graham, a first-round pick in 2010, before the season when they added some incentives to his contract. He's been something of a late bloomer, but a player who fits very well in their scheme under coordinator Jim Schwartz and who is having a career year.
Indeed, back in August the Eagles gave Graham some extra incentives that allowed him to make an extra $1.5 million. That seemed like a temporary measure, however, and now we’re seeing more of a long-term resolution on the horizon. Note that Graham reportedly planned on holding out for a new deal earlier this year, though that didn’t last long, if at all.
Graham, who turns 30 in April, is currently set to carry a $7.5 million cap hit in 2018, the final year of his deal. The Eagles might be able to lower that number to provide some much-needed cap relief while also giving Graham the long-term security he desires.
Graham is deserving of a new deal. Not only is he a hard-working player who was named one of Philadelphia’s five captains. He’s also just a really good player. Through the Eagles’ first 10 games, Graham has logged 18 tackles, six sacks, three pass deflections, and one forced fumble.
Graham’s impact goes beyond the traditional stats. He ranks tied for 8th among all 4-3 defensive ends in pressures this season. He also ranks first overall in PFF’s Run Stop Percentage. Graham is a key member of an Eagles defense that ranks No. 1 in rushing the passer and No. 1 in run defense.
Earlier this week, Eagles Insider Dave Spadaro said that the team was going to re-sign at least one more player before the season ends. Perhaps Graham is the player he was hinting at.