Jimmy Graham thinks the Bears have the right plan for him

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The Bears gave free agent tight end Jimmy Graham a bigger contract than many were expecting him to land, with Graham guaranteed to make $9 million this year. But Graham says the financial commitment was only one aspect of his decision to sign with the Bears.

Graham also said his confidence in Bears coach Matt Nagy to use him properly, and his relationship with General Manager Ryan Pace, who was in New Orleans when the Saints drafted Graham, made the difference.

Conversations that I had with coach and with Ryan Pace and how they use their tight end . . . were just above and beyond,” Graham said, via Adam Jahns of TheAthletic.com. “I’m excited to play for Ryan Pace. I’m excited to be his player again. . . . I’m hungrier than ever.”

Graham said Nagy’s offense is the closest thing he’s seen to the Saints’ offense since he left New Orleans five years ago. The Bears would love to see Graham look like he looked in New Orleans — and not like he looked last year in Green Bay, where he managed just 38 catches for 447 yards and three touchdowns.

51 responses to “Jimmy Graham thinks the Bears have the right plan for him

  1. No other team would’ve paid half of what the Bears are, so it really was an easy choice for him.

  2. It would seem to me that Graham will be a salesman in his life after football.

    Why? Because he certainly sold the Bears a bill of damaged goods for $9 million.

  3. Sad truth is, Aaron Rodgers has never really utilized a tight end consistently like Graham was utilized in New Orleans, or like Gronk was in NE. He had a decent connection with Cook in 2016 (and he’s better than Graham), but Finley had much more potential. Rodgers has never made one shine consistently.

  4. He excelled with Drew. Wilson & Aaron Rogers ain’t Drew, but also ain’t Trubisky or Foles and he has T-Rex arms in traffic. $30k per catch is gonna seem like a bargain by this time next year.

  5. Rodgers has never made one shine consistently.
    —-
    AR is the reason Richard Rodgers still keeps getting jobs lol. When he’s got a capable tight end like Finley or Cook they had good numbers. Packers just haven’t given him anyone to work with. Graham can talk all he wants but a year from now he will be looking for a new team again.

  6. Kind of weird that the Packers would make him the highest paid tight end in history and then have the wrong plan for him.

  7. If their plan is to be disappointed and wonder why they didn’t sign Eric Ebron instead then yeah, they have the right plan.

  8. Another TE my Packers couldn’t make work. Why are we so bad at this?

  9. Graham said Nagy’s offense is the closest thing he’s seen to the Saints’ offense since he left New Orleans five years ago.

    Let that sink in

  10. This guy hasn’t been effective since he left the Saints. Why do teams keep overpaying for him?

  11. Loved having Graham in Green Bay.
    Very professional, stand up guy, who played through a broken thumb during the tail end of his first season here.
    He just never lived up to his enormous contract.

    Jimmy was supposed to be a difference maker in the red zone, which simply never happened, and I seriously question if he has anything left in the tank.
    I wish him well though, with the exception of two dates out of the year.
    Maybe they’ll find a better way to utilize him in Chicago.

  12. I am excited to be making $9M next year, really excited. Feel like I am in a dream. Throws behind the line so I don’t have to run.

  13. Jimmy Graham is so full of it. He knows he can’t play anymore and that he’s just in Chicago to get a check. Bears GM is easily one of the worse in the league. Just giving away money.

  14. All these Saint fans saying nobody could properly use Graham outside of Drew Brees yet Jimmy didn’t win anything while in NO and the Saints didn’t want to pay him and traded him away.

  15. Back in the 60’s, Da Bears TE was this crew-cutted dude with an attitude! #89 I recall…….

  16. The plan with a 9m dollar contract attached to it made it pop. No other team was going to offer him that much. Well maybe the Texans. Wish he would have had a better part of his career in Green Bay just doesn’t get the separation anymore.

  17. Ya right, signing in CHI was DEFINITELY all about the money. Jimmy Graham can love Matt Nagy and that offense as much as he wants but fact of the matter is that he is over looking one GIANT problem with the Bears and that is the fact the Bears offense sucks and they don’t really have a QB. Jimmy Graham’s production has fell off a cliff in recent years despite playing with some of the leagues top QB’s over the last few years, last year he played with Rodgers. If you think his production is going to magically go up playing with the bust that is Mitchell Trubisky or Nick Foles both of whom are terrible then I have a bridge in SF to sell you.

  18. Jdog63 says:
    March 26, 2020 at 5:00 pm
    Sad truth is, Aaron Rodgers has never really utilized a tight end consistently like Graham was utilized in New Orleans, or like Gronk was in NE. He had a decent connection with Cook in 2016 (and he’s better than Graham), but Finley had much more potential. Rodgers has never made one shine consistently.

    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

    Finley had 55 and 61 receptions, respectively, in the two years leading up to his career-ending neck injury. Those teams featured Donald Driver, Jordy Nelson, Randall Cobb, Greg Jennings, and James Jones. But yeah, sure, Rodgers didn’t use him consistently.

  19. I tried so hard to like him with the Pack, but, man, that guy is slow as molasses in January, especially after the catch. He’s not a bad signing as a player, but, wow, at that price….

  20. The Saints let him go b/c Sean Payton recognized that, for all his massive talent, Graham was not a hard worker. He understood that it would catch up to him later in his career, and indeed it has. The Seahawks and Packers both had the OBs to take advantage of his skills. The results speak for themselves.

    As for Graham’s comment about the Bears and Nagy’s offense – I was at that Saints Bears game last year, and while Trubisky was awful, to compare the Bears and Saints systems is marketing at best and delusional at worst.

  21. Now you have Trubisky throwing to you, could be high, could be low, could be to the left or to to the right, but never in stride.

  22. Now he is hungry? I guess the move to Green Bay and them paying him big money didn’t do that. I see some people saying that Green Bay didn’t use him correctly. Really? 14 catches on 24 targets through the first six games of the season. He was a drop machine last season. He was also getting paid $9 million- same as this season.

  23. He didn’t have a very good year, but neither did any other starting NFCN TE. He and Rudolph were virtually identical and everybody else was invisible. Every team is looking for a game-changing TE. Good luck to him and the Bears.

  24. Every year with Graham he’s feeling great, is rarin’ to go, and has something to prove. Show us, Jimmy, don’t tell us.

  25. Dear Jimmy,

    For the money the Bears are paying you, if you don’t have 10+ TD’s this season then they you just fleeced the Bears and we’re used to it.

    Love,

    Bears fans everywhere

  26. firejerry says:
    March 26, 2020 at 7:17 pm
    Now you have Trubisky throwing to you, could be high, could be low, could be to the left or to to the right, but never in stride.
    ————–
    It doesn’t matter. He drops almost half of the catchable balls thrown to him!!!

  27. Not sure where you all were but he had a great year with the Seahawks. 10 TD as Russell’s red zone monster. He didn’t have the highlights or the gaudy stats but he earned his paycheck

  28. You had Drew. Then you had Wilson. Then you had Rodgers. Now you have who knows but I guess “hungrier than ever” gets you paid in Chicago

  29. From:
    Brees
    Wilson
    Rodgers

    To:
    Trubisky/Foles….YIKES, yeah, that 9M should soothe the pain somewhat

  30. They said he was as good as Gronk or was going to surpass Gronk…someday… Well I am still waiting for someday….He was good….when he was with Brees… but hasn’t reached 1000 yards since he left NO. Still would take Gronk over him any day.

    Gronk – 9 seasons, 115 games, 7861 yards, 15.1 yards per catch, 79 TD, 4 all pro berths, 5 pro bowl selections.

    Graham – 10 seasons 153 games, 7883 yards 12.1 yards per catch, 74 TD, 1 all pro berth, 5 pro bowl selections. He played 38 more games than Gronk and a full season longer.

  31. smarter than you says:

    March 26, 2020 at 5:32 pm

    Graham said Nagy’s offense is the closest thing he’s seen to the Saints’ offense since he left New Orleans five years ago.

    Let that sink in
    ++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

    I’m trying to wrap my brain around Mitch Tribisky being comparable to Drew Brees. (Yes Foles won a Championship in Philly as the 2nd QB, but The Jaguars proved he wasn’t superstar material).

  32. By “right plan,” Jimmy is speaking only in terms of finance. He hasn’t expended a single ounce of effort since he left New Orleans. He is the single laziest player in the league and unworthy of a contract from any team. It just shows how dim the Bears are.

  33. He’s not a bad guy. It’s doesn’t seem like he’s lazy. Rodgers was probably his biggest advocate with the Pack. You look at him physically and his history, esp. With Saints, and you think, I gotta take a chance on this guy. The problems are 1) he’s gotten slow and 2 he’s lost confidence in his hands. Like really slow. I used to have a vehicle that I described as not needing the second hand when measuring the 0-60 time. That slow. Also, he was never a threat in the red zone and in the end zone. He’s 6’7″. Favre killed by rolling out a little to his right and flipping it to Chmura in the end zone. Graham never was able to execute that play, not reliably. But: would I take 9 mill if someone gave it to me and say nice things about them? You’re darn tootin’ I would.

  34. I don’t know any fellow Bears fan that is excited about this FA signing. Like some of the others have said – Jimmy needs to produce as there has been no TE production with any of the Bears current TEs.

    Prove it on the field Jimmy and don’t waste the Bears money, we are broke~!

  35. aj66shanghai says:

    Not sure where you all were but he had a great year with the Seahawks. 10 TD as Russell’s red zone monster. He didn’t have the highlights or the gaudy stats but he earned his paycheck
    ———-

    Except for the TDs he had a similar year his first season in GB. 2017 in Sea 57/520/10. In GB 55/636/2.
    He just became invisible in the red zone and I don’t expect that to change much. He is just not as explosive as he used to be.

    He also goes down at the slightest contact. It’s crazy. He never breaks a tackle. Never bowls over some little DB. He just hits the deck like someone dropped a ton of bricks off the back of the truck.

  36. Graham was once great. I don’t blame him for wanting to stack some more cash, but he must be at least a little embarrassed by his diminished skills. He has a lot of trouble getting separation, especially in the red zone. He has obviously lost quite a bit of speed. He will probably do good against green bay because they can’t cover any tight end. Other than that, Graham had a nice career in the NFL.

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