“The Coaches Trust Me”

August 8th, 2022

Mike Edwards is confident. Should he be?

The Bucs signed two big-name safeties this offseason in Keanu Neal and Logan Ryan, but Mike Edwards is feeling the love — and the confidence.

Edwards has been a successful ballhawk through his three-year career, but he hasn’t been more than an occasional starter, and last year he was mired in a phone vaccine card scandal that led to a three-game suspension.

But Edwards is fired up for this season and an expanded role, so he explained yesterday at One Buc Palace.

“The coaches trust me,” he said.

Interestingly, Edwards quickly talked about wanting to be more “vocal” this season, which is a tremendous priority for head coach/defensive playcaller Todd Bowles.

Joe listened to former Bucs bone-crushing safety Jordan Whitehead (2018-2021) talk on The Official New York Jets Podcast about how Bowles was obsessed with safeties communicating regularly and loudly with teammates whether they need the chatter or not.

Whitehead told a story about Bowles following him through walk-throughs and making him talk, and then make the team run a play again in walk-throughs if Bowles didn’t like the quality of Whitehead’s talking.

So it seems Edwards is being pressed now to be more vocal, potentially taking over for Whitehead, who is a proud member of the Jets.

Will Edwards win the starting gig? Joe wouldn’t bet on it, but there’s another 34 days until opening day.

11 Responses to ““The Coaches Trust Me””

  1. Bird Says:

    Of the 4 big name safety(s)/ slot

    Winfield/ neal/ ryan / edwards ….it seems like edwards name has come up the least. RyAn and winfield probably have the most picks in camp. And neal is laying the wood in run game as true strong safety type role.

    We shall see how it plays out in season as i am sure all 4 will be interchangeable. Maybe neal comes out in more 2nd or 3rd and long passing situations.

  2. Goatfarmer Says:

    Edwards looks like he’s ready to level up. Improved tackling and understanding zone coverage concepts would help him and everyone else.

    But if everyone is talking at once than it might as well be no one. So, Todd, follow through to make sure you are getting effective communication, not just high energy blabber.

  3. Matt in St. Pete Says:

    Edwards is most definitely a ball hawk. He’s always around the ball making plays. Yeah, Goatfarmer, I completely agree that once ME improves his tackling and his zone angles he’s going to be very dangerous and become a legit great NFL starting safety. Whatever we do we better not let Bill Belicheat get ahold of him in free agency next year. BB will turn him into an All Pro. Watch.. if he leaves and goes to New England watch what happens.

    Logan Ryan and Keanu will rub off on him and I expect a huge huge season from Mike Edwards. A healthy SMB is literally the make it or break it factor for our defense this year.

    We’re going to miss Jordan Whitehead. He was heat-seeking missile. He doesn’t have Bob Sanders elite speed but he never shys away from contact. No one can question Jordan’s heart, I’m very happy for him to get paid. He’s a dog and deserves every penny. I’m guessing they play AWJR closer to the line of scrimmage to play more of that role.

  4. NeverGIVEup Says:

    Maybe the newfound trust in him has to do with the fact that he was right to have faked the V-Card?

    I mean after all; how can you suddenly trust a guy that lied to you and got suspended for it the year prior?

    Things that make you go…. DOOOOPE!!!

  5. Señor Harry in Costa Rica Says:

    Talking is so important, but so difficult to get players to do. I used to coach a lot of zone presses in basketball and communication is key to having success in a press and you can tell players this all you want. But unless you do as Bowles is doing – going to the extreme in elaborating on it, it won’t happen.

    It is not what scheme you run, but what you emphasis and focus on.

  6. Scotty in Fat Antonio Says:

    Three words for our DBs. CATCH THE BALL!!!!!

  7. ChiBuc Says:

    It is inspiring to see so much confidence while sporting that haircut. Forget the tip, tackle your barber.

  8. Buc92’ Says:

    Neal & Winfield are your starters folks , Logan Ryan will start in the slot in place of Murphy bunting …


  9. GOB Says:

    Yup, Ryan is mostly going to play nickel corner. His versatility and experience should help immensely. Ryan has over 200 snaps at three different positions, so if Bowles wants to mix things up, he can. I think you can expect better overall communication with Ryan in there. He’s like having a coach on the field. He understands positioning, and leverage. Two of the most important traits a DB can have.

  10. Brandon Says:

    First off, Edwards has been our best coverage safety the past two years and it isn’t even close. The dude has rare talent as a coverage safety and needs to be on the field. Winfield is good but much better near the LOS than in deep centerfield, he should be at SS and Edwards at FS.

  11. Goatfarmer Says:

    It would be so Bowles to not play anyone anywhere long enough to know what they are doing. Mix it up to keep the opponent guessing meanwhile your own guys are staring at each other not knowing what anyone else is doing.