The Philadelphia Eagles made a lot of news Tuesday as it was reported that they are parting ways with cornerback Cary Williams and outside linebacker/defensive end Trent Cole in addition to possibly trading running back LeSean McCoy to the Buffalo Bills for inside linebacker Kiko Alonso next week. After making all of those moves, including the trade that has yet to happen, it makes you wonder if the Eagles will make one final push to re-sign outside linebacker Brandon Graham, who is currently scheduled to be an unrestricted free agent next week.
Cole played 834 snaps for the Eagles last season with most them coming on the right side while Connor Barwin played 1,046 snaps on the left side. Graham filled in at both spots last season to the tune of 524 snaps. If the Eagles allow Graham to also walk, you have to wonder who they will get to play on the right side, being as Cole will be gone.
Almost a month ago, Geoff Mosher of CSNPhilly.com reported that Graham is seeking a four-year deal in the $30 million neighborhood, with $20 million guaranteed. If indeed that report is true, one would think that the Pittsburgh Steelers might be interested in signing Graham if he’s allowed to test free agency, being as it looks like they’re unlikely to be able retain outside linebacker Jason Worilds.
In his limited playing time last season with the Eagles, Graham recorded 47 tackles and 5.5 sacks to go along with four forced fumbles. He only started one of the 16 games that he played in and that was because Cole missed a game due to an injury.
Should the Eagles indeed re-sign Graham, that will be one less 3-4 outside linebacker that Worilds will have to compete against during free agency.
We have less than a week to go before the start of the new league year and it will be interesting to follow this Graham story up until then.