2. His 5.5 sack total in 2016
As soon as you mention Graham’s 5.5 sacks in 2016, the dialogue begins to unfold as you’d expect. Someone says he didn’t have enough for the liking of his team and his fans. Someone else will go the route of defending him, saying his countless amounts of quarterback pressures more than make up for it.
Here’s what we know. Graham should have had more sacks in 2016. There was enough talent on the other end of the defensive line. He played in a “Wide-Nine” defensive scheme. In said scheme, defensive ends line up wider than normal and have very little responsibility in stopping the run (hence the name). It allows speed rushers to have, virtually, one responsibility and do what they do best, bring down the quarterback.
Keep in mind he had the benefit of having defensive tackles Fletcher Cox and Bennie Logan lining up with him. That was supposed to take some of the pressure and attention off of him. Cox will be back in 2017. Logan’s been replaced by Timmy Jernigan who has just as much talent as Logan did.
So, regardless of what side you’re on, we have a question. Would you be satisfied if Graham followed his 2016 season with another 5.5 sack total in 2017? For those keeping score, he’ll make a little over $1 million per sack for his efforts if he does.