Bryan Edwards – University of South Carolina – 6’3” 212 lbs. – November 13, 1998 (21 years old)
- Tall receiver who plays bigger than his 212 weigh in.
- Likely goes higher in the draft if he doesn’t break his foot while preparing for the combine.
- Doesn’t waste time, gets off the line quickly.
- Good breaks inside and out.
- Seems comfortable with press coverage.
- Uses hard jab step to throw off DBs at the line. Keeps them guessing throughout the game.
- Does a good job of selling the route and timing his breaks.
- Has the long speed to maintain separation.
Top of the screen. The throw isn’t there, but this is a nice release off the line. Edwards gives a little stutter step and then beats his guy inside.
- Worked on sweeps and screens in addition to his receiving work.
- Not sure if the acceleration and speed is enough that he can consistently get the corner on sweeps in the NFL.
- Lacks some of the explosiveness that you see out of the other rookies, like his new teammate.
- Does read his blocks well for a receiver and can find yardage.
Sweep that he wills himself to a first down.
Top of the screen, screen. Then, watch him work.
- Tough tackle with a physical running style.
- Not afraid to take it to the defender, doesn’t shy away from contact.
- Can make a defender miss in the open field using spin or hard step too.
Just watch the collision. What happened to Alabama’s tackling? First down!
A little speed, some broken tackles, and a spin (WHOOP).
- Ran a full route tree, mostly on the outside.
- 4 year player that contributed from year 1.
- Fights for yardage and has a good sense for the first down and end zone.
- Works back to the QB. Attacks the ball rather than letting it get in on him.
Waits for the DB to turn and then breaks back toward the ball. Beats the defender back to the ball and then fights him off for, guess what, another first down!
- Plus catch radius with ability to grab the ball away from his body.
- Can fight off defenders and high point the ball.
- Does go to the body catch on occasion
- Doesn’t seem to limit his catch radius or create drops.
- More of a comfort play when he has the space available.
B.E.A. utiful one handed grab over the corner and gets his foot down.
- Does a good job of using his body and hands at the line and down field.
- Dealt with some inconsistent QB play and continued working.
Gets to the outside, keeps him on his back shoulder, little hand battle before he separates for the catch and score.
Playing for Da Raiiiddderrrsss
Las Vegas (that’s still so weird) spent a first and a third round pick on receivers in this draft. After the only receiving option that established itself in 2019 was Darren Waller at tight end, the Raiders went shopping for some receiving talent. While it may take some time to acclimate without typical OTAs, I expect both Ruggs and Edwards to be given plenty of opportunity in 2020.
Tyrell Williams has a spot this year, but the Raiders can cut him next off season with minimal dead cap leftover. Maybe Tyrell takes more of his old role of down field threat as Bryan grows into a primary receiver. Hunter Renfrow should fill the slot role full time. I like Renfrow as a do it all slot guy, and he’ll be fine in that spot. While Waller probably doesn’t go for 90 receptions and 1145 yards gain, he’s certainly going to be a primary passing target.
For Edwards, Rudy does not have favorable projections (or really anything projected) for the Bry man. Early in the season, he may take a bit of a specific role where he works on some screens/sweeps along with the occasional deep throw. However, once he gets acclimated, I think he takes over the WR2 job and never looks back. May even be the primary Z receiver just because of his size and physicality.
Bryan comes in as my #8 rookie WR, an early to mid 2nd round pick depending how your draft shakes out. I have seen him go at the start of the third and that is a steal if you get him there.
For redraft purposes, he’s a flyer in most leagues. In leagues with a smaller bench or fewer teams, he may just be somebody to put on the watch list and monitor his snap count and targets. In 2020, I can see something like 600-700 yards with a handful of touchdowns where he starts the season around 20-25 snaps and works his way up to 40+ no later than mid season.
Edwards may never be a true #1 WR for fantasy purposes, but the floor seems safe and certainly isn’t devoid of upside, as you can see above.