October 12, 2023   3 MIN READ

‘We Don’t Rent No More’

Gunn On One: Brandon Graham's Special Connection With Philly


If he had agreed to that other contract offer after the 2014, Brandon Graham wouldn’t have been there in the fourth quarter of that big game in Minneapolis to execute the most famous strip-sack in Eagles history.

But against his better wishes, the free-agent pass rusher decided against signing with the rival New York Giants and agreed to a four-year deal with the Eagles, who gad drafted him 13th overall five years earlier.

Two years later, Graham’s sack of quarterback Tom Brady in the waning moments of the Super Bowl propelled the Eagles past the dynastic Patriots, 41-33, and to the franchise’s first Lombari Trophy.

To think, Graham had almost walked away to the Eagles’ rivals.

The Giants had offered Graham, a free agent in 2015, a one-year contract. The Eagles offered more years and more money, but Graham’s experience with the franchise to that point had been soiled by fan criticism and his head coach trying to replace him.

“I wanted to beat the Eagles,” the 14-year Eagles veteran recalled to Derrick Gunn, recalling the ups and downs of his career on Episode 5 of “Gunn On One” on Inside The Birds.

Graham took Gunn down memory lane, recalling his turbulent first few years with the Eagles – from battling through an ACL injury from his rookie season to sparring online with fans and internet trolls who had labeled him a bust, from Chip Kelly trying to upgrade over him to becoming a Super Bowl champion.

And so much in between, including a table turn on Graham’s relationship with Philadelphia and its fan base.

“Philly is my home,” Graham told Gunn. “We don’t rent no more.”

Brandon Graham

ITB PHOTO: Brandon Graham’s career nearly tanked after his first four years, but his turnaround to Super Bowl hero makes him a Philadelphia icon.

Fan Criticism

Graham: “It got me really good. It tested me, I’ll say that for sure. It hit me deep because it really tested you, to see how you were going to fight back. There was so much coming at me at one time. It got way deep at first, but then as I started to fight [on the field], I started to feel better. I was able to defend myself with what I was able to do on the field.”

Maturing With Age

Graham: “I wouldn’t change nothing because I learned a lot about myself going through that adversity. I made it through. If I don’t play no more [after 2023], I feel like I’m cool with it or whatever because I finally made them eat them words, and on top of that I forgave everybody and we move froward.”

Re-Signings With Eagles

Graham: “I know the grass ain’t always greener on the other side.”

Connection With Fans

Graham: “Just the people, I understand now. I didn’t understand it at first, but now i do. That helped me so much more, who Philly is as a people on the whole and how I fit in. It’s spot on. I’ve learned a lot about myself during that time. I am that blue-collar, work hard, chip-on-my-shoulder, going to fight…I think I fit right in with what Philly is all about. It was kind of a no-brainer when I realized that was me.”

– Geoff Mosher (@geoffmoshernfl) is co-host of the “Inside the Birds” podcast and staff writer for InsideTheBirds.com.

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