Brandon Graham is one American football player who can conveniently play in different positions. The athlete’s favorite position is, however, defensive end but he can also play as an offensive guard, punter, placekicker, and linebacker. His skill and ability to switch various positions in a game have been outstanding. Perhaps, this explains why it has been difficult for the Philadelphia Eagles to let him go or trade him for another player.
As you would soon learn, Graham has set himself apart as a player any team would love to have. He has pulled off several uncommon feats in the league and has been a very consistent and reliable player for the Eagles which he has been with since his professional career took off in 2010.
Events Leading To Him Getting Drafted 13th Overall in 2010
The beginning of Brandon Graham’s NFL career was in 2010 when he was selected 13th overall in the first round of the year’s NFL Draft. But that’s not where his story began neither was it the beginning of his journey as an American footballer.
Graham began playing competitive football at the age of seven. He was born in Detroit, Michigan, on the 3rd of April 1988, to Derrick Walton and Tasha Graham. He has three sisters whose names are Brianna Walton, Mikyla Walton, and Brittany Duncan. Together with his siblings, Graham was raised single-handedly by his mother in Detroit. He had his high school education at Crockett Vocational Tech where he played for his school’s football team.
In his sophomore year, Brandon Graham was recognized by The Detroit News as an honorable mention in its 2003 All-Detroit team. As a senior, he ran a 4.43-second 40-yard dash at the Nike Summer football camp and earned a selection to take part in the U.S. Army All-American Bowl at the Alamodome. He would later emerge as a finalist for both the Walter Payton Trophy and the Parade All-America High School player of the year.
While with his high school football team, Graham recorded massive victories in the league, giving rise to his selection as the All-class statewide best linebacker and the Associated Press Class B All-State football team’s player of the year. He also made it to the All-Detroit first-team as a linebacker and was selected to the All-Class state Dream Team by the Detroit News.
The future Philadelphia Eagles player went on to launch his college career as a linebacker at the University of Michigan but would, however, later switch to defensive end before the 2006 NCAA Division I FBS football season.
Brandom Graham Was The First Big Ten Conference Player Selected In The 2010 NFL Draft
As stated earlier, Brandon Graham was selected by the Eagles in the 2010 NFL Draft and he went on to sign a five-year contract with the team on July 29, 2010. In 2015, he signed a new 4-year deal reportedly worth $26 million.
Records have it that Graham was the first Big Ten player selected in the 2010 NFL Draft. This offers an insight into how illustrious his college career was. Apart from being named to the First-team All-Big Ten of 2009, he was honored as the Big Ten Most Valuable Player of the year and he was also a First-team All-American.
Brandon Graham suffered a torn anterior cruciate ligament that saw him go through a microfracture surgery that ultimately slowed him down in the first two years of his professional career. Nonetheless, he was a good player and came close to joining the New York Giants in 2015 before his contract was renewed by the Eagles.
Becoming a Super Bowl Champion In 2017
The 2016 NFL season was a remarkable one for Brandon Graham as it highlighted his consistency as a fine player which culminated in him becoming a Super Bowl Champion. In the said season, he pulled off 59 tackles, 11 run stuffs, 5.5 sacks, and 2 forced fumbles for his team. It was an outstanding feat that saw him get named a First-team All-Pro by Pro Football Focus. He was also named All-NFC by the Pro Football Writers Association and to the 2016 All-Pro 2nd Team by the Associated Press. That’s not all, Pro Football Focus rated him as the ninth-best player in the NFL.
The following season, his fellow players named him as one of the best players in the league. Brandon was ranked 93rd on the NFL Top 100 Players of 2017. He is very deserving of this given his contributions to the Eagles as they emerged Super Bowl champions in 2017. He memorably got Tom Brady strip-sacked, helping Derek Barnett to pull off a fumble recovery that ultimately contributed to the Eagles winning 41-33.
The highlights of his professional career are all summed up in his NFL career stats. As of 2019, he has helped himself to a total of 367 tackles, 18 forced fumbles, 51.0 sacks, 7 pass deflections, 6 fumble recoveries, and one defensive touchdown.
Brandon Graham Met His Wife In High School
Brandon Graham is a husband as well as a father. He is happily married to Carlyne Graham, his high school sweetheart. Together, they have an adorable daughter named Emerson Abigail Graham born in 2016. Abigail has a younger brother named Bryson who was born in 2019.
The footballer and his wife have a lot in common, like Brandon, Carlyne Graham was raised on the rough east side of Detroit. They both schooled at Crockett Technical High School and from what we learned, they met for the first time in 2002. They became friends, then lovers, and were able to sustain their admiration for each other through the years they were separated in their pursuit of a college education.
While the NFL star schooled at the University of Michigan, Carlyne studied at Lane College, a historically black college in Tennessee. She also enlisted in the Army Reserve and served for three years. Brandon and Carlyne reconnected and got married in 2014.
The NFL Star’s Wife Is Well-Read
Apart from schooling at Lane College where she graduated Cum Laude in 2008 with dual degrees in criminal justice and sociology, Carlyne would later attend Loyola University in Chicago which again culminated in her earning dual degrees in social work and child and family law. As a result, she has been able to work as a director of social services and case manager. This saw her serve families in Chicago before she moved to Philadelphia.
Carlyne and her husband are very public-spirited. They run a charity called Team Graham 55 which aims at mentoring young people and helping them maximize their potentials among other things.