On the heels of a report by the Philadelphia Inquirer’s Jeff McLane that Graham is poised to hold out for a new contract, a source informed of the situation told NFL Network’s Mike Garafolo on Wednesday that the defensive end is expected back with the team soon for optional and mandatory workouts. Garafolo added there’s no sense that Graham is pushing for a new contract at this point, according to the source.
The eighth-year lineman inked a four-year, $26 million contract in 2015. The pact pays Graham $6.5 million both this season and next, an amount apparently not sitting well for a player making less than teammate Vinny Curry, who has never logged an NFL start.
Graham, meanwhile, was Philly’s top-performing end last season and said of his contract in January: “We’ll worry about that when it comes, I guess. But I’m just going to try and make sure I’m working hard and hopefully things happen.”
On Wednesday, Graham refused to comment on his absence, saying via text, per McLane: “Can’t talk about contract stuff right now.”
It ultimately remains to be seen if Graham will be the first of many players league-wide to play a game of chicken with their employer over new cash. Each of these players will find out by September what they truly mean to the teams they toil for.