football-player football-score football-helmet football-ball Accuracy Arm-Strength Balance Ball-Security Ball-Skills Big-Play-Ability Block-Deconstruction Competitive-Toughness Core-Functional-Strength Decision-Making Discipline Durability Effort-Motor Elusivness Explosiveness Football-IQ Footwork Functional-Athleticism Hand-Counters Hand-Power Hand-Technique Hands Lateral-Mobility Leadership Length Mechanics Mobility Pass-Coverage-Ability Pass-Protection Pass-Sets Passing-Down-Skills Pocket-Manipulation Poise Power-at-POA Progressions RAC-Ability Range Release-Package Release Route-Running Run-Defending Separation Special-Teams-Ability-1 Versatility Vision Zone-Coverage-Skills Anchor-Ability Contact-Balance Man-Coverage-Skills Tackling Lifted Logic Web Design in Kansas City clock location phone email play chevron-down chevron-left chevron-right chevron-up facebook tiktok checkbox checkbox-checked radio radio-selected instagram google plus pinterest twitter youtube send linkedin search arrow-circle bell left-arrow right-arrow tdn-mark filled-play-circle yellow-arrow-circle dark-arrow-circle star cloudy snowy rainy sunny plus minus triangle-down link close drag minus-circle plus-circle pencil premium trash lock simple-trash simple-pencil eye cart
NFL Draft

Chase Edmonds Has Opportunity To Prove Himself As A Starter

  • The Draft Network
  • November 4, 2020
  • Share

The Arizona Cardinals have the third-best record in the NFC and are second in the contentious NFC West. It’s no secret that’s because of a surging offense. We saw sparks of this last season when then-first-year quarterback Kyler Murray won Offensive Rookie of the Year despite the team going 5-10-1 and missing the playoffs for the fourth consecutive year. 

The Cardinals took their few successes—a young, hot head coach in Kliff Kingsbury, a young signal-caller in Murray, and a very young, emerging defense—and added some more talent around them, including three-time All-Pro wide receiver DeAndre Hopkins. With an elevated passing game and the dual-threat Murray brings to the offense, the running game was expected to sustain its efficiency from the end of 2019. The Cardinals finished with the ninth-most yards per game (120) overall, which was led by Kenyan Drake, Murray, and David Johnson, who was traded to the Houston Texans for Hopkins.

There was also another back, teetering among the team’s best rushers, and it was 2018 fourth-round pick Chase Edmonds. Edmonds got some meaningful snaps last season when Johnson went down with an injury. He emerged as an extremely viable option in 2019, and now, in 2020, he’ll jump into an even bigger role.

Drake’s injury in Week 7 against Seattle gave way for Edmonds to show what he can do as a true starting back. Drake will miss multiple weeks with a high-ankle sprain, which will give Edmonds a chance to build off of three productive outings prior to the Cardinals’ bye this past weekend. 

Edmonds finished the 37-34 win over the Seahawks with five carries for 58 yards and seven receptions for 87 yards; he had a total of 59 rushing yards and a touchdown on eight carries and 62 receiving yards on eight targets in Weeks 5-6. He has arguably been Arizona’s best back and carved out a considerable role on passing downs, averaging 8.5 yards per reception. He hasn’t had much of a workload out of the backfield this season, but that’ll soon change—and history shows us good things happen when it does. Edmonds has just three career starts and only had double-digits touches once in three years. When that happened (in Week 7 of 2019) he totaled 126 yards and three touchdowns on the ground. He injured his hamstring late in that game, which affected the rest of his season.

The Cardinals have the option to split carries between Edmonds and 2020 seventh-round draft pick Eno Benjamin, but Kingsbury has put faith in Edmonds, even going so far as to say he could be a starting back in mid-August. 

He has a do-it-all nature as a back, pass-catcher, and blocker. Edmonds has been part of the trio of rushers, again including Murray and Drake, that make up the second-best run game in the league. Arizona averages 161 yards per game, behind only the Baltimore Ravens (179). For the next coming weeks, Edmonds will have to take on a large part of the workload himself against better to middling to downright bad run defenses. It’s a good thing Edmonds is ready.

“It's just a testimony to my hard work this season,” Edmonds told reporters last week. “I busted my (butt) this offseason, truly. From the start—even before COVID—I was working every single day.”

Filed In

Written By

The Draft Network