The Patriots were fresh off of their first Super Bowl victory and Bill Belichick was keen on taking his team to the next level with regards to consistency. In typical Belichick fashion, he decided to upgrade his tight end position by bringing in free agent Christian Fauria and by trading up in the first round (using their 1st, 3rd, and 7th round picks) to snag Colorado graduate Daniel Graham. Graham had won the John Mackey award as college football's tight end and he went on to serve the Patriots well.
Graham started at tight end for the 2003 and 2004 Super Bowl Champion Patriots, collecting 120 receptions for 1393 yards, and 17 touchdowns as Tom Brady's 4th/5th target. He was more nationally regarded for his blocking, where he performed his role to general acclaim. After the Patriots, he spent four years in Denver (serving as captain in 2008), one year in Tennessee, and the first part of last season with the New Orleans Saints. He was released mid season and opted to retire this off-season.
Daniel Graham was never a true star, as his first round status usually accompanies, but he played as a Patriot- he did his job, he was a team player, and he was a leader in his actions. We wish him plenty of success in whatever he decides to do with his future.
In an additional note, former Patriot DE Trevor Scott has signed with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. Scott played one season with the Patriots and there's no coincidence that he signed with the Bucs after a week of joint practices. Scott was a reserve defensive end and notched three sacks and 14 tackles over 14 games.