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Fred Graves
Wide Receivers
College:
Utah
Experience:
11

Bio

COACHING
Fred Graves entered 2011 challenged with developing one of the NFL's youngest wide receiving corps, but it was veteran Steve Smith who re-emerged in Graves' first season as Carolina's wide receivers coach. Under Graves, Smith produced his first 1,000-yard season since 2008 and was named to his fifth Pro Bowl after recording 79 catches for 1,394 yards and seven touchdowns.

Graves' teaching also helped second-year wide receiver Brandon LaFell total a career-high 613 yards. LaFell started the final six games of the season and posted his first career 100-yard receiving game during that time.

Before the Panthers, Graves served as the wide receivers coach for the Tennessee Titans from 2007-10, taking an unproven group of wide outs and grooming them into reliable targets. In 2007, Justin Gage emerged and tied for the team lead with a career-high 55 catches. The next year, Gage evolved into a big-play threat, ranking third in the NFL with an average of 19.1 yards per reception.

In 2009, the Titans selected Kenny Britt in the first round of the NFL Draft and added Nate Washington in free agency. Graves helped Britt compile a team-high 701 yards to become the first rookie to lead the team in receiving yards since 1995. In Washington's first season as a full-time starter in the NFL, he established career bests for catches and touchdowns.

Graves joined the Titans from the Detroit Lions, where he oversaw the wide receivers in 2005. In his one season with the Lions, the wide receiver position group tallied 148 receptions for 1,810 yards, and Roy Williams continued to mature into a featured receiver with a career-high eight touchdowns under Graves' guidance.

Prior to the Lions, Graves spent one season as the Cleveland Browns' wide receivers coach in 2004. There, he worked with current Carolina Panthers offensive coordinator Rob Chudzinski, who was the Browns' offensive coordinator for the final five games of the year.

From 2001-03, Graves coached the wide receivers for the Buffalo Bills. In 2002, veterans Eric Moulds and Peerless Price along with rookie Josh Reed combined for 231 catches for 3,053 yards and 21 touchdowns. Graves produced two 1,000-yard receivers in Moulds and Price while directing Moulds to the first 100-reception season in franchise history and Pro Bowl honors.

He entered the NFL coaching ranks with 26 years of experience on the college level, including all but one mentoring wide receivers and the last 19 at his alma mater, Utah, from 1982-2000. During his tenure with the Utes, Graves tutored future Carolina Panthers wide receiver Steve Smith, helping him set a school record with a 20.6-yard career average per catch and twice earn All-Mountain West Conference recognition.

At Utah, Graves held a number of positions: assistant head coach/wide receivers (1994, 1998-2000), offensive coordinator/wide receivers (1995-97), wide receivers (1982-89, 1991-93) and running backs (1990). He also served as tight ends/wide receivers coach at Northeast Missouri State from 1975-76, Western Illinois from 1977-78 and New Mexico State from 1979-81.

PLAYING AND PERSONAL
Graves played halfback and split end for Utah from 1969-71 and led the team with 45 receptions as a senior. He graduated from Utah with a degree in business.

HISTORY
Halfback/split end: Utah 1969-71. College coach: Northeast Missouri State 1975-76, Western Illinois 1977-78, New Mexico State 1979-81, Utah 1982-2000. Pro coach: Buffalo Bills 2001-03, Cleveland Browns 2004, Detroit Lions 2005, Tennessee Titans 2007-10, joined Panthers in 2011.

COACHING
Fred Graves entered 2011 challenged with developing one of the NFL's youngest wide receiving corps, but it was veteran Steve Smith who re-emerged in Graves' first season as Carolina's wide receivers coach. Under Graves, Smith produced his first 1,000-yard season since 2008 and was named to his fifth Pro Bowl after recording 79 catches for 1,394 yards and seven touchdowns.

Graves' teaching also helped second-year wide receiver Brandon LaFell total a career-high 613 yards. LaFell started the final six games of the season and posted his first career 100-yard receiving game during that time.

Before the Panthers, Graves served as the wide receivers coach for the Tennessee Titans from 2007-10, taking an unproven group of wide outs and grooming them into reliable targets. In 2007, Justin Gage emerged and tied for the team lead with a career-high 55 catches. The next year, Gage evolved into a big-play threat, ranking third in the NFL with an average of 19.1 yards per reception.

In 2009, the Titans selected Kenny Britt in the first round of the NFL Draft and added Nate Washington in free agency. Graves helped Britt compile a team-high 701 yards to become the first rookie to lead the team in receiving yards since 1995. In Washington's first season as a full-time starter in the NFL, he established career bests for catches and touchdowns.

Graves joined the Titans from the Detroit Lions, where he oversaw the wide receivers in 2005. In his one season with the Lions, the wide receiver position group tallied 148 receptions for 1,810 yards, and Roy Williams continued to mature into a featured receiver with a career-high eight touchdowns under Graves' guidance.

Prior to the Lions, Graves spent one season as the Cleveland Browns' wide receivers coach in 2004. There, he worked with current Carolina Panthers offensive coordinator Rob Chudzinski, who was the Browns' offensive coordinator for the final five games of the year.

From 2001-03, Graves coached the wide receivers for the Buffalo Bills. In 2002, veterans Eric Moulds and Peerless Price along with rookie Josh Reed combined for 231 catches for 3,053 yards and 21 touchdowns. Graves produced two 1,000-yard receivers in Moulds and Price while directing Moulds to the first 100-reception season in franchise history and Pro Bowl honors.

He entered the NFL coaching ranks with 26 years of experience on the college level, including all but one mentoring wide receivers and the last 19 at his alma mater, Utah, from 1982-2000. During his tenure with the Utes, Graves tutored future Carolina Panthers wide receiver Steve Smith, helping him set a school record with a 20.6-yard career average per catch and twice earn All-Mountain West Conference recognition.

At Utah, Graves held a number of positions: assistant head coach/wide receivers (1994, 1998-2000), offensive coordinator/wide receivers (1995-97), wide receivers (1982-89, 1991-93) and running backs (1990). He also served as tight ends/wide receivers coach at Northeast Missouri State from 1975-76, Western Illinois from 1977-78 and New Mexico State from 1979-81.

PLAYING AND PERSONAL
Graves played halfback and split end for Utah from 1969-71 and led the team with 45 receptions as a senior. He graduated from Utah with a degree in business.

HISTORY
Halfback/split end: Utah 1969-71. College coach: Northeast Missouri State 1975-76, Western Illinois 1977-78, New Mexico State 1979-81, Utah 1982-2000. Pro coach: Buffalo Bills 2001-03, Cleveland Browns 2004, Detroit Lions 2005, Tennessee Titans 2007-10, joined Panthers in 2011.

 

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    Carolina Panthers' Cam Newton (1) gives high-fives to fans after an NFL football game against the Cleveland Browns in Charlotte, N.C., Sunday, Dec. 21, 2014. The Panthers won 17-13. (AP Photo/Mike McCarn)