Now, a lesser-known guy who currently plays for the Vikings has delivered a similar message, but with far less sound and/or style.
Defensive end Ray Edwards realizes that, come 2011, he likely won’t be back.
“There are too many guys,” Edwards recently told Jeremy Fowler and Brian Murphy of the St. Paul Pioneer Press. “Just on defense, they have me, Chad Greenway, Ben Leber. [Brett] Favre won’t be here, so they have to find a quarterback. I just don’t
see it. I don’t know where I’m going to be.”
Edwards was a restricted free agent in March, despite having four years of service. In any other year, he would have been an unrestricted free agent. This year, he fell into the gears of the rules of the uncapped year.
He recognizes he’s “not on of their high-priority guys,” and for good reason. The Vikings are deep at defensive end, with Brian Robison and Everson Griffen waiting in the wings to take over the spot across from Jared Allen and next to Pat and Kevin Williams. Though Pat likely won’t be back in 2011, either, the Vikings won’t want to give Edwards a market-value deal when they can replace him internally. Indeed, the fact that they need a long-term replacement for Pat Williams makes it even less likely that they’d overspend at defensive end.
Then there’s the question of whether Edwards merits a high-end deal. With all the attention paid to the other defensive linemen, he arguably should have had a breakthrough performance before the 2009 playoffs. For the regular season, he had a respectable-but-not-stellar 8.5 sacks. The year before, he had only five.
And that’s why he was surely so miffed about his inability to cash in come March 2010. With three sacks against the Cowboys and one against the Saints, someone would have overpaid him in the early days of free agency.
He now needs to hope for a similar finish to the 2010 season — and that folks will remember it by the time 2011’s version of free agency begins, whenever that may be.