Among the wide receivers the Las Vegas Raiders chose back in April, Bryan Edwards might end up having the biggest impact.
The Edwards pick has potential written all over it and you can look to his college teammate, Deebo Samuel, for a sneak preview. Samuel joined the San Francisco 49ers with the 36th pick in the 2019 NFL Draft. Edwards and Samuel together were a formidable duo at South Carolina, and now both find themselves in the professional ranks. As a rookie, Samuel played in 15 games for the 49ers, totaling 57 receptions, 802 receiving yards, and three touchdowns, all while averaging 14.1 yards a reception. Is it possible that the Raiders will get this level of production from Edwards from the outset? It’s hard to tell, but Edwards excelled in college when Samuel was injured and once he went pro.
The Dynamic Duo
It goes without saying the two wide receivers complimented each other well. Samuel received much of the attention and recognition as the number one wide receiver at South Carolina while Edwards showed flashes of brilliance with stunning catches like this one. However, even with such displays, Edwards was overlooked prior to the draft as Josh Schrock of NBC Sports pointed out.
“Edwards, whom the Raiders took in the third round with the 81st overall pick in the 2020 NFL Draft, is viewed as a big-body receiver with strong hands who excels in contested-catch situations. However, there were questions about Edwards’ top-end speed and overall athleticism, which, along with a foot injury suffered before the NFL Scouting Combine in February, could have caused him to slide in the draft.”
Samuel played a key role in the 49ers’ Super Bowl run. Raider Nation surely hopes Edwards can have that level of impact on a Raiders team looking to rebound. Assuming the foot injury is all healed up, Edwards’ size and hands will come in handy as he makes the transition to the NFL. Perhaps he’s destined to become that all-world number two option that Tyrell Williams was originally brought in to be.
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*Top Photo: Sean Rayford/Associated Press