The Wisconsin Badgers returned all five starters along the offensive line heading into the 2018 season. They won’t be doing the same heading into 2019.
Edwards faced a similar decision after the Badgers 13-1 season in 2017 where he earned All-America honors from four publications, but ultimately returned to Madison despite encouraging feedback from the NFL Advisory Committee a year ago. While the reputation from 2017 carried over, his performance dipped in the eyes of some while missing the final three games of his redshirt junior campaign. During the season, however, it came to light that he suffered a reported left shoulder/arm injury during fall camp that he played through during the season.
With at least Edwards and redshirt seniors Michael Deiter and Beau Benzschawel all headed to the NFL Draft in 2019, there is potential to add center Tyler Biadasz to the group if the redshirt sophomore declares.
However, before we put the cart before the horse, let’s take a look at the very big picture view of Edwards as we head into full on #DraftSZN.
David Edwards scouting profile
Weight: 315 pounds
Strengths: Edwards, as you’ve heard almost every week since he’s entered the starting lineup, is a former prep quarterback and began his collegiate career as a tight end. He’s going to test well at the combine, and is a plus athlete for the position. Edwards tenacity in the run game will probably come as an obvious as a Wisconsin lineman, but it’ll be his way onto the field early in the NFL.
Areas to improve: Edwards is a above average athlete heading into the NFL but his pass protection is likely his area that needs work the most. His technique is solid for the most part, but like anyone who’s only really been playing the position for three years he is still continuing to hone his skills. I also believe he’ll benefit from being in an NFL strength and conditioning program — not that this is a slight to Wisconsin by any stretch, but Edwards will continue to fill out and get stronger, particularly in the lower body.
Summary: Edwards is a high upside prospect with a comfortable floor already established, which will make him very attractive to NFL teams. His athleticism will garner the “not a right tackle only” mantra from TV analysts (which is dumb because he has been the right tackle for a left-handed quarterback for three years but they do not teach you that in school). Edwards has the potential to be a high level tackle in the NFL, but his continued development will be important, as it is for all rookies.
Projected draft slot: Mid-to-late round 1 to mid-round 2.