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Oct 27, 2013; New Orleans, LA, USA; New Orleans Saints tight end Jimmy Graham (80) celebrates with fan following a win over the Buffalo Bills in a game at Mercedes-Benz Superdome. The Saints defeated the Bills 35-17. Mandatory Credit: Derick E. Hingle-USA TODAY Sports

New Orleans Saints 2014 Player Ranks: No. 2, Jimmy Graham

Just two days stand in our way until the return of New Orleans Saints football, Who Dat Nation! We’re down to the final two player selections of our two-week series that focuses on my Top 15 players heading into the 2014 Saints season. Today’s selection: Jimmy Graham

Birthday: 11/24/1986 (27 years old)
Height: 6’7″
Weight: 265 pounds
Twitter: @TheJimmyGraham
College: Miami (The ‘U‘)
NFL Experience: 5th Season
Position: Tight End
Number: 80

2013 Highlights & Notes

  • Played in all 16 games
  • 2013 Pro Bowl selection
  • Team signed Graham to long-term contract (4-year, $40 million, $21 million guaranteed) on 7/15
  • 86 receptions, 1,215 yards, 14.1 yard average, 16 touchdowns
  • Career high in receiving touchdowns
  • Played in 66.9% of team’s offensive snaps (754 of 1,127 snaps)
  • #10 in Top 100 NFL Players
  • First-team Associated Press All-Pro
  • All-Pro (CBSSports.com, ESPN.com, Sports Illustrated and The Sporting News)
  • PFWA All-NFL and All-NFC
  • NFC Offensive Player of the Week (Week 3); NFC Offensive Player of the Month (September)

Overview

I had the luxury of watching Jimmy Graham since Day One at Saints training camp during the open and closed practices in 2010. I knew he was going to be something special when he made that one-handed catch during the afternoon practice. Graham has played through pain, continuously grinding it out through his career. He simply is a player that is hard to contain. Opposing defenses do their best to stop Graham, and overall, have found little success. Jimmy Graham received a well-deserved contract for his dominant style of play during the offseason, and commands a great deal of respect from anyone.

2014 Outlook

When it comes to the tight end position, Jimmy Graham is the ‘cream of the crop’. There’s nothing about Graham’s play that suggests that he will have any type of major drop off. He’ll be heavily targeted by Drew Brees this season, and Graham should find ultimate success. As a side note, Graham’s improved on his run blocking. Personally I’ve noticed that he’s been more dominant off the line of scrimmage against opposing defenders. Perhaps the ‘Legion of Boom’ rule helps Graham the most this season.

Previous Rankings

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