Trent Edwards was wide-eyed as he fielded questions at his locker Thursday night. The same emotion that he showed following scoring drives was written all over his face. It looked like some combination of excitement, hope and desperation.
Edwards got to run the show for the majority of the preseason finale against the Jets and again capitalized, going 22-of-32 for 197 yards with two touchdowns. He is officially in the conversation for the third and final quarterback spot behind Michael Vick and Nick Foles.
“I am happy for Trent,” said Andy Reid. “Whether it’s here or somewhere else, I’m happy for Trent.”
The “or somewhere else” part of that sentence could be ominous, or it could be that the coach had truly not made up his mind between Edwards and Mike Kafka on the eve of cutdown day. Either way, Edwards made it clear that somewhere else is far from a desirable destination.
“I want to be here. This is the team I want to play for,” said Edwards, growing more animated. “I’ve been in this guy’s shoes, I’ve been in that guy’s shoes before [signaling to the stalls on either side of him]. I feel like I can help these guys out. I feel a lot more reinvigorated with the place I’m at with football and playing this position.”
In four preseason games, Edwards racked up 489 passing yards with four touchdown passes and zero turnovers. He was sacked just once. It is a far cry from the beginning of his stint in Philadelphia, where he struggled at times to hit his targets even when there was no defense opposing him in practice. He played the final three quarters against the Jets Thursday and engineered four touchdown drives. After each one, the 28-year old celebrated like the game had all the meaning in the world.
“I thought he played well, I thought he did a nice job,” said Reid. “So Howie [Roseman] and I go back, we look at it tomorrow, and see what we think.”
The roster must be trimmed to 53 players by 9 p.m. Friday. There is a mandatory barbecue at Jeffrey Lurie‘s house between 12-4. Both Edwards and Kafka plan to attend.
Who will get a seat at the table?
The momentum is on Edwards’ side. He has had the opportunity to showcase himself, whereas Kafka — who came in as the backup to Vick — has played only nine snaps because of a fractured left hand.
“It’s tough for any player that doesn’t get to play and compete, and those are the things that I love to do and enjoy doing,” said Kafka. “When you can’t really do that, it’s disappointing.”
The pecking order coming into training camp was not even questioned, and didn’t even include Edwards. Does it now?
“Those decisions are above my pay grade,” said Edwards. “I want to be here. They know that, I know that and you guys all know that. So we’ll see what happens.”