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DANIEL LAWRENCE GRAHAM (born November 16, 1978) is a former American football tight end in the National Football League
National Football League
(NFL). He played college football for the University of Colorado
University of Colorado
, and was recognized as a consensus All-American . He was drafted by the New England Patriots in the first round of the 2002 NFL Draft
2002 NFL Draft
, and also played professionally for the Denver Broncos
Denver Broncos
, Tennessee Titans
Tennessee Titans
and New Orleans Saints .

CONTENTS

* 1 Early years * 2 College career

* 3 Professional career

* 3.1 New England Patriots
New England Patriots
* 3.2 Denver Broncos
Denver Broncos
* 3.3 Tennessee Titans
Tennessee Titans
* 3.4 New Orleans Saints
New Orleans Saints
* 3.5 NFL statistics

* 4 Personal * 5 References * 6 External links

EARLY YEARS

Graham was born in Torrance, California
Torrance, California
. Growing up in Denver, Colorado, he attended Thomas Jefferson High School . Graham won the Randy Brewer award, which was given to the school's most inspirational player. During his time there, he played the positions of tight end, outside linebacker , long snapper, and placekicker. As a senior, he caught 33 passes for 741 yards (22.45 yards per reception) and six touchdowns , and recorded twelve quarterback sacks and 29 total tackles in just seven games. He also lettered three times in basketball .

At Thomas Jefferson High school and later at the University of Colorado, Graham wore jersey No. 89, the number that former New York Giants tight end Mark Bavaro wore during his pro career. As a child Graham idolized Bavaro, who has since followed Graham's career and has come to befriend him in his adult life.

COLLEGE CAREER

While attending the University of Colorado
University of Colorado
, Graham played for the Colorado Buffaloes football
Colorado Buffaloes football
team from 1998 to 2001. Nicknamed Grahambo, he was a prolific receiver for the Buffaloes, where he also started two games playing fullback during his freshman season before switching to tight end. After his senior season in 2001, he won the John Mackey Award as the nation's best tight end, was a first-team All-Big 12 selection, and was recognized as a consensus first-team All-American. He finished his college career with 106 receptions for 1,543 yards and 11 touchdowns.

* 1998: 3 catches for 83 yards. * 1999: 19 catches for 264 yards with 4 TD. * 2000: 33 catches for 433 yards with 1 TD. * 2001: 51 catches for 753 yards with 6 TD.

PROFESSIONAL CAREER

NEW ENGLAND PATRIOTS

In the first round of the 2002 NFL Draft
2002 NFL Draft
, the Patriots selected Graham with the 21st overall choice. Early in his career he was known for dropping too many passes and suffering apparent lapses of concentration. He improved greatly in this aspect of his playing and also made himself known as an excellent blocking tight end. In his rookie season, Graham recorded 15 receptions for 150 yards, and one touchdown . He added four tackles on special teams. In 2003, he started nine games and recorded 38 catches for 409 yards and four touchdowns. By 2004, Graham was fully integrated into the Patriots' system. He had 30 receptions for 364 yards and seven touchdowns. The Patriots won the Super Bowl
Super Bowl
at the end of each of these seasons. Graham was named a Patriots team captain on December 6, 2006.

DENVER BRONCOS

Graham was signed by the Denver Broncos
Denver Broncos
on March 6, 2007. The Broncos awarded Graham a five-year, $30 million contract. The deal included $15 million in guaranteed money that was distributed as a $10 million signing bonus along with a first-year roster bonus of $5 million.

He was voted offensive captain along with quarterback Jay Cutler for the 2008 season.

Daniel Graham
Daniel Graham
was featured on the cover of the October 12, 2009 issue of Sports Illustrated
Sports Illustrated
magazine. The cover photo shows Graham cradling the football in his left arm and hurdling an unnamed Dallas Cowboys player during the October 4, 2009 contest where the Broncos defeated the Cowboys by the score of 17-10.

On March 2, 2011, the Broncos released Graham.

TENNESSEE TITANS

On July 31, 2011, Graham signed a three-year deal with the Tennessee Titans . He was released on June 12, 2012 with two years remaining on an $8.25 million contract. Graham was losing reps to Jared Cook , Craig Stevens and rookie Taylor Thompson .

NEW ORLEANS SAINTS

On August 11, 2012, Graham signed with the New Orleans Saints
New Orleans Saints
.

On November 2, 2012, Graham was released by the New Orleans Saints
New Orleans Saints
. He retired in August 2013.

NFL STATISTICS

YEAR TEAM GAMES RECEPTIONS TARGETS YARDS YARDS PER RECEPTION LONGEST RECEPTION TOUCHDOWNS FIRST DOWNS FUMBLES FUMBLES LOST

2002 NE 12 15 - 150 10.0 31 1 7 0 0

2003 NE 14 38 - 409 10.8 38 4 21 0 0

2004 NE 14 30 - 364 12.1 48 7 20 0 0

2005 NE 11 16 - 235 14.7 45 3 9 1 0

2006 NE 12 21 34 235 11.2 29 2 12 1 1

2007 DEN 15 24 33 246 10.3 28 2 12 0 0

2008 DEN 16 32 50 389 12.2 28 4 20 0 0

2009 DEN 16 28 42 289 10.3 24 1 14 0 0

2010 DEN 16 18 37 148 8.2 28 0 5 1 0

2011 TEN 16 2 5 25 12.5 21 1 2 0 0

Career

142 224 201 2,490 11.1 48 25 122 3 1

PERSONAL

His father, Tom Graham , starred at the University of Oregon from 1969-1971 where he became the all-time leading tackler in Duck football history and a 2001 inductee into the University of Oregon Hall of Fame. Tom played professionally for the Denver Broncos
Denver Broncos
, the Kansas City Chiefs
Kansas City Chiefs
, the San Diego Chargers
San Diego Chargers
, and the Buffalo Bills during the course of an eight-year career as a linebacker .

REFERENCES

* ^ Reiss, Mike (August 17, 2006). "These tight ends are tight". The Boston Globe. * ^ 2011 NCAA Football Records Book, Award Winners, National Collegiate Athletic Association, Indianapolis, Indiana, p. 11 (2011). Retrieved June 24, 2012. * ^ "Archived copy" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 2011-07-23. Retrieved 2012-10-03. * ^ http://www.rantsports.com/nfl/2012/08/16/new-orleans-saints-add-depth-and-experience-with-the-signing-of-tight-end-daniel-graham/ * ^ http://www.denverpost.com/ci_5370262 Bill Williamson, “Bronco’s sign TE Graham”, The Denver Post, March 6, 2007, retrieved October 20, 2009 * ^ A B AP (2007-03-07). " Tight end
Tight end
Graham agrees to deal with Broncos". USAToday.com. Retrieved 2007-03-07. * ^ http://www.rotoworld.com/content/playerpages/player_main.aspx?id=1095&sport=NFL retrieved on October 20th, 2009 * ^ http://www.rockymountainnews.com/news/2008/sep/05/broncos-select-team-captains/ * ^ Sports Illustrated, October 12, 2009, cover, volume 111, issue 13 * ^ "Graham Released". denverbroncos.com. * ^ http://www.rotoworld.com/player/nfl/1095/daniel-graham * ^ http://profootballtalk.nbcsports.com/2012/11/02/saints-re-sign-camarillo-waive-graham/ * ^ " Daniel Graham
Daniel Graham
Stats". ESPN Internet Ventures. Retrieved 14 April 2014. * ^ Tom Graham (American football)