Raiders’ Bryan Edwards’ camp play draws lofty comparisons

A Bryan Edwards spotlight catch is turning into extra routine by the day in Raiders camp. Wednesday was no exception.

He and quarterback Derek Carr connected on a few deep balls by which Edwards confirmed off the scale, athletic potential, power and ball abilities to go up and over defenders to return down with a troublesome catch.

Edwards’ work up to now has led teammates and coaches to give you some lofty comparisons, with Carr referencing Davante Adams and Raiders head coach Jon Gruden not too long ago evaluating Edwards to Hall of Famer Terrell Owens.

That sort of reward actually raises eyebrows, particularly with Edwards coming off an injury-riddled rookie season by which he caught simply 11 passes for 193 yards and one landing. Nevertheless, from a bodily standpoint, Edwards actually profiles as an Owens- or Adams-type weapon.

“Anytime you can get compared to a guy like that, I feel like it’s a huge honor,” Edwards mentioned. “I’m just trying to come here and work every day no matter what’s said about me. Just come in here and be the same guy and make as many plays as I can.”

What might sound impromptu hookups between Carr and Edwards in follow is de facto greater than a year within the making. They go all the best way again to final year.

When Edwards was a quiet rookie getting second- and third-team reps, Carr made it a degree to look Edwards’ method regardless that he wasn’t an enormous a part of the sport plan.

For Carr, it was paying homage to his days at Fresno State when a little-known freshman buried deep on the Bulldogs’depth chart turned a go-to goal in follow.

The younger huge receiver was Adams, now among the best huge receivers within the NFL. While the Fresno State teaching workers wasn’t but positive what it had in Adams, Carr actually was.

“He was redshirting, but I wanted to throw him every pass,” Carr remembers.

Carr felt a way of deja vu final year when he stored wanting Edwards’ method throughout follow, regardless that the rookie from South Carolina wasn’t a distinguished a part of the plan.

“I was still trying to throw his rep every day in practice,” Carr mentioned.

Fast ahead one year and it’s apparent the constructing blocks Carr and Edwards laid in 2020 are starting to repay. As Edwards continues his climb to the highest of the depth chart, the year-long consolation degree the pair has nurtured is obvious throughout camp.

“Any time I get on the field and get some passes with Derek, obviously it’s going to build chemistry and trust,” Edwards mentioned. “We just need to continue to do that, and I need to continue to make plays for the guys.”

That contains the rising confidence Carr has in throwing to Edwards in tight-coverage conditions.

While all of it performs out on the sphere, the connection really begins lengthy earlier than the Raiders start follow. As a part of a every day routine, Carr pulls Edwards apart to remind him he has the bodily potential and power to overpower defenders.

“I completely agree with him,” Edwards mentioned. “I’ve got to come down with every opportunity.”

In flip, Carr is rising extra snug wanting Edwards’ method. With tight finish Darren Waller sitting out the final two days of follow, that connection has solely grown.

“Very fun to throw him the ball,” Carr mentioned. “I’ve mentioned it earlier than, identical to Davante might simply transfer by the air, their physique management is simply spectacular.

“I think also you see his strong hands. Sometimes he’ll catch a ball and he’s so strong that he doesn’t bring it into the body where they can punch it out, he’ll just hold it away from them. Not many guys can do that, but he can.”

If Edwards can carry his robust camp over to video games, together with fellow second-year huge receiver Henry Ruggs, who has additionally had a very good camp, the Raiders might have a strong and versatile receiving corp with the big-bodied Edwards, the explosive Ruggs, a reliable slot goal in Hunter Renfrow and Pro Bowl tight finish in Waller.

All a part of Gruden’s grand plan, in accordance with Carr.

“It’s like Gruden is going to get what Gruden wants,” Carr mentioned. “He wanted guys at the skill positions that when he thinks of a play, that’s the guy that can do that. And he’s got exactly what he wants.”

Contact Vincent Bonsignore at [email protected] Follow @VinnyBonsignore onTwitter.

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