CB Sleeper – Mike Edwards

Before the 2013 NFL Draft I will be posting my top sleeper at each position.

The day before the NFL draft the FP Football Sleeper Team will be released.

CB – Mike Edwards, Hawaii

Edwards Run BackIf you are from Ohio or follow FBS recruiting then you know all about Glenville High School in Cleveland, Ohio. It produces stud football players year in and year out. Edwards is just another in a long line of Glenville football stars to make it at the FBS level. He was a track and football star in high school and originally signed with Tennessee in 2009 as a 4-star recruit. While at Tennessee he was involved in an altercation that resulted in him being charged with armed robbery. Edwards ended up reaching a plea agreement on a lesser charge. Questions regarding the immature and questionable nature of that incident will undoubtedly surface as he goes through the draft process. 

It appears he has matured as an individual and he has made the most of his second chance. He was dismissed from Tennessee and then took a redshirt season at a junior college in 2010 before he transferred to the University of Hawaii. At Hawaii he became quite the warrior on the field. In 2011 he started all 12 games at CB and worked as a return specialist. This past season, Edwards took his game to another level.

He earned all MWC honors as the Special Teams Player of the Year after leading the country in kickoff return yards. He averaged roughly 3o yards a return and scored 3 touchdowns. He also played well on defense recording 43 tackles 15 passes defended, 2 interceptions and 1 forced fumble.

Despite Edwards size he plays very physical. This is part of the intangible attribute I love the most in his game, a confident swagger. I want a CB who is sure of himself and knows he can get the best of the WR more times than not. I think that mindset suits him well to come into the league as a later round pick and prove everyone wrong. This kid has made the most of his second chance and we are certainly pulling for him to do big things at the next level.

Edwards did receive a combine invite and it will be interesting to see if he measures in at a full 5’10″. I do suspect he will run a sub 4.4 in the 40 and be one of the fastest DB’s in Indianapolis.

I was fortunate to watch 2 Hawaii games during the college football season and recently reviewed some clips from the past two seasons as well. These are my initial takeaways on CB Mike Edwards:

 

Strengths

Edwards is a smooth quick twitch athlete and plays with a healthy swagger.

He plays physical and is always around the ball.

Edwards demonstrates good recovery speed in coverage.

He has great acceleration and makes decisive cuts as a return man.

He exhibits impressive balance at top speed.

 

Weaknesses

Edwards physical stature may limit his pro potential.

He relies on his athleticism too often in coverage.

He projects as a liability in run support at the next level.

 

Likely Draft Range

Late 4th – 6th

 

Best Fits

Teams may be take him off their draft board because of the legal incident as a freshman at Tennessee. That incident along with his slender 5’10″ frame are the main reasons this kid isn’t getting more hype. Edwards is a return specialist who could fill the nickel CB role for any team. He plays fast and physical and will not be afraid to mix it up with whatever WR or TE he is matched up against. The ideal fits would be a team who desperately needs a return man and CB depth:

 - Carolina Panthersmike ed 1

 - Cleveland Browns

 - Miami Dolphins

 - Oakland Raiders

 - Tampa Bay Buccaneers