Gus Edwards did nothing wrong to lose playing time in Baltimore. He's just stuck in a crowded backfield that added rookie J.K. Dobbins this offseason. Edwards has maintained gorgeous consistency, averaging over 5.0 yards per carry despite a downtick in attempts per game in 2019. The workload figures to shrink even more with Dobbins and Mark Ingram leading the run game. Don't put Edwards on your bench until Ingram or Dobbins miss significant playing time.
Edwards' role with the team could take a hit after the Ravens drafted Ohio State running back J.K. Dobbins in the second round, Jeff Zrebiec of The Athletic reports. Baltimore placed a tender on Edwards in March, so he's presumably still in the team's plans to an extent, but the Dobbins pick is a strong statement that the Ravens are still looking to beef up the run game. Dobbins, a second-rounder, has a three-down skill set and projects to be the direct backup to Mark Ingram. If the Ravens are looking to reduce Ingram's workload to keep him fresh later in the season, Dobbins would get the first crack at the carries. Edwards is still uniquely effective in short-yardage situations; he's notched a positive run rate of at least 88 percent in both of his two seasons. Edwards can still have that role with Dobbins on the roster, but the path to matching his overall carry volume from 2019 just got a lot more treacherous.
Edwards will remain with the Ravens after the team placed a contract tender on the exclusive rights free agent. Edwards is thus slated to reprise his role working behind Baltimore's top back, Mark Ingram. Edwards finished up the 2019 campaign with 133 carries for 711 yards and two TDs, to go along with seven catches for 45 yards. As long as Ingram stays healthy, Edwards isn't a strong fantasy lineup option, but the 24-year-old has been productive when given the opportunity, having maintained an average of 5.3 yards per carry over his first two seasons with Baltimore.
Edwards saw three carries for 20 yards in the divisional-round loss to the Titans. The Ravens surprisingly went away from using Edwards against the Titans despite the second-year running back ripping off 6.7 yards per carry. Edwards finished the regular season with 133 carries for 711 yards (5.3 YPC) and two touchdowns, proving to be a reliable option out of the backfield behind Mark Ingram and Lamar Jackson. He is set to hit free agency this offseason, but given his skill set and familiarity with the system, Baltimore will likely attempt to retain him.
Edwards could be leaned on out of the Ravens' backfield Saturday against the Titans if Mark Ingram (calf) is limited or sidelined, Jeff Zrebiec of The Athletic reports. Edwards was the lead RB option Week 17 when Ingram rested a tight calf, totaling 22 touches for 132 yards from scrimmage. After the Ravens' first-round bye, Ingram didn't practice until Thursday, when he was limited, and received a questionable designation for the upcoming divisional-round matchup. Adam Schefter of ESPN reported that Ingram is "expected to play," but Edwards is on hand in the event the former's ability to get on the field is at all compromised.
Edwards carried 21 times for 130 yards and caught one of two targets for two additional yards during Sunday's 28-10 win over the Steelers. Edwards thrived as the team's featured back, rumbling for 6.2 yards per carry en route to a new career high in rushing. Perhaps the only gripe for Edwards' fantasy owners in this one was his inability to find the end zone, as backfield mate Justice Hill vultured a red zone touchdown from Edwards in the second quarter. Still, it was an excellent performance from the second-year back, who could play an expanded role in the team's divisional-round game if Mark Ingram (calf) is still limited by his injury.
|* indicates player did not play that week|
|WK||DATE||OPP||OPP RANK||OPP FPTS|
|3||09/29||Kansas City Chiefs||23||20.37|
|10||11/16||@New England Patriots||2||11.94|
|16||12/27||New York Giants||17||17.75|
|3 Year Avg||135||714||2||4||32||0||86|