Name: Chase Edmonds
Position: Running Back
Pro Team: Arizona Cardinals
College Team: Fordham Rams
Draft Status: Fourth round, 134th overall
- Height: 5’9’’
- Weight: 205 Pounds
- Arm Length: 31 1/8’’
- 40-Yard Dash: 4.55
- Three Cone: 6.79
- Vertical Jump: 34’’
- Broad Jump: 122’’
Edmonds was very productive at the FCS level, rushing for 5,862 yards and 67 touchdowns during his four-year collegiate career. He also saw a lot of work in the passing game, catching 86 passes and averaging 1.95 receptions per game. His best season was his freshman year where he produced 1,959 total yards. The fact that he broke out early in his career insinuates that he has the potential to quickly translate his game to the next level.
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As a smaller compact back, Edmonds does a good job of running north-south and breaking arm tackles. He’s a gritty runner who is not afraid of contact. Edmonds is known best for his lateral quickness and agility. He has excellent feet which help him to remain balanced after taking a hit. From there, he uses his footwork and short-area quickness to slip past defenders.
He will be best used as a complementary piece in a committee. Edmonds is a solid receiver out of the backfield and his ability to catch the football will aid his chances of seeing the field.
The biggest drawback to his game is his lack of speed. He doesn’t have the second or third gear to blow by the defense and be a true homerun threat. That’s something you want out of a smaller back because satellite backs need to operate in space and be able to turn the corner against NFL defenses. He also lacks the burst to get to and through the hole. This means it takes a few extra steps for him to get to top speed.
I stated earlier that he’s a very determined runner who does a good job of breaking arm tackles. However, he doesn’t have the size and often struggles to build up enough inertia to run over or through opposing defenders. Unfortunately, this could limit him to just a part-time role.
Edmonds is drawing rave reviews from the coaching staff and it appears he already has the backup running back job locked down. If this is true, then he could be the team’s lead running back if David Johnson suffers another season-ending injury. For an FCS player drafted in the fourth round, this a great scenario to be in.
Let’s face it, it’s going to be almost impossible to pry the starting job away from David Johnson. He’s one of the best running backs in the league and he’s considered the face of the franchise. Johnson is the best receiving back in the NFL right now and that’s going to make it a lot harder for Edmonds to cement himself as the team’s satellite back.
Expect him to be the team’s backup running back for the next few years. He’s never going to be the team’s lead back unless something happens to Johnson. Value him as a late-round handcuff in fantasy. He will be a trendy end-of-bench flier in dynasty by the end of the year.
Even if Johnson loses a step, he’s still faster and more explosive than most of the running backs in the league. With that being said, I wouldn’t be surprised if the Cardinals sign him to a long-year multimillion-dollar deal. If this happens, Edmonds will be subjected to being one of the team’s backup running backs. At best, he could see a limited role in the passing game, creating some fantasy value in PPR leagues. His stock should immensely increase if Johnson ever suffers a catastrophic injury. In this scenario, Edmonds’ services might be best served on another team.
He’s very comparable to Ameer Abdullah. Both backs have great agility but lack the long speed to scoot past opposing defenses. Like Abdullah, he can make some highlight-reel runs that could draw a lot of attention. The two backs have great feet and can move laterally really well, making it easier for them to juke out defenders in the open field.
Giovanni Bernard is another player who compares to him. Both players are similar in size and stature but also reflect a lot of the same athletic attributes. Bernard is rock solid in the passing game and is a viable option in PPR leagues. If Edmonds’ role expands with the Cardinals, then he could deliver similar production in fantasy.
PROJECTED RANGE FOR ROOKIE DRAFTS
He’s falling to the late fourth-round of rookie drafts. Depending on the draft, sometimes you can catch him in the fifth round. DLF’s Rookie ADP has him being selected at 46.60 as the 19th running back off the board behind Josh Adams, Ito Smith, Bo Scarbrough, and Justin Jackson. He fits the mold of a running back who is being drafted in this range. Edmonds is forecasted as a long-term backup who has some athletic potential. Backs with similar profiles tend to fall to the later rounds in rookie drafts. It’s not a surprise that he’s one of the last players being drafted. After all, David Johnson has a death grip on the starting running back job.
I can’t fault anyone for wanting to take a stab at him with one of their fourth or fifth-round picks. All the players being drafted in this range have a high bust rate, so you might as well grab the player that intrigues you the most. This year’s running back class is immensely talented and it’s pushing some talented players down the draft board. Ultimately, what this is going to do is cause some players to come out of nowhere and become key fantasy assets. Of course, we don’t know for sure who is going to exceed expectations, but it’s always good to get a few lottery tickets. You never know, your fifth-round pick could be the next Adam Thielen or Alfred Morris.
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