Saints TE Jimmy Graham showed how explosive he could be late last season, completing his rookie year on a hot streak. The finish had many predicting 2011 would be a breakout year for him. He's living up to expectations. There have been miscues — he made a mistake on a route in the fourth quarter of Week Three, and it resulted in a Drew Brees interception. Brees wasn't happy with Graham on that particular play, but it didn't damage the trust between the two players. "(Graham) recognizes a lot of the nuances that we do throwing the ball, he's improved as a blocker, and I think he's driven," head coach Sean Payton said Sept. 28. "... He takes coaching and applies it to the field and each week does something that impresses you or encourages you more." While he's improving his blocking technique, his strength is still as a pass catcher, and he has quickly become one of the league's more productive tight ends.
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