Eagles Notebook: Eagles' Edwards plays great, but is it enough?

Trent Edwards finished the preseason with a 100.5 passer rating.
Trent Edwards finished the preseason with a 100.5 passer rating. (YONG KIM / STAFF PHOTOGRAPHER)
Posted: August 31, 2012

TRENT EDWARDS completed 10 of 11 passes in the first half of the Eagles' preseason-ending, 28-10 victory over the New York Jets. His passer rating was 143.6.

Yet, Edwards might be unemployed by the end of the day Friday.

If such records are kept somewhere, it would be good to look up when a quarterback had a preseason like the one Edwards put together for the Eagles, and did not make the roster. The final numbers from Thursday night were 22-for-32 for 197 yards and two touchdowns, a 105.9 passer rating. His final numbers for the preseason were 54-for-80 (67.5 percent) for 489 yards, four touchdowns, no interceptions and 100.5.

But we all know Michael Vick and third-round rookie Nick Foles are on the team. Mike Kafka, a fourth-round pick in 2010, broke his nonthrowing hand in the preseason opener and didn't play again; indications from the Eagles were a little fuzzy, but the tea leaves seemed to be saying that Kafka didn't need to play in the preseason finale. He came into camp very well thought of by the coaches, he performed well at Lehigh, and the numbers Edwards racked up against deep subs, week after week, might not have changed anything within the inner sanctum.

Of course, we could be wrong about that. Lots of Eagles fans would be very happy if we were. But Eagles coach Andy Reid didn't seem terribly effusive Thursday night.

"We'll see," Reid said, when asked about the Kafka-Edwards decision. "I want to go back and evaluate it and kind of churn over it here, visit with Howie [Roseman] about it, and the coaches . . . The nice thing is, all four of them can play."

Edwards "did a nice job," Reid said, whether he ends up here or elsewhere.

Edwards said his plan for today is to attend the team barbecue at Eagles chairman Jeffrey Lurie's house from noon to 4, then await his fate. The Eagles must trim the roster from 75 to the regular-season limit of 53 by 9 p.m. Friday.

"I guess I'll probably know by 9 Eastern," Edwards said. "I haven't been told anything."

Edwards, 28, hasn't played in the NFL since being cut this time last year by the Raiders. Does he think he has won a job somewhere, if not here?

"I don't know," he said. "Those decisions are beyond my control. I've worked my tail off, all through this process. I've gone through some highs and lows, I've thrown some good balls, I've thrown some bad balls . . . I wish I could give you a better answer."

Asked if he felt he was "reborn" here, Edwards said: "I don't think I ever died," but he said he was thankful for the opportunity to show his skills. He said this was the best preseason of his career, which includes 3-plus years as a starter in Buffalo.

Other "bubble boys" also impressed. Wideout Mardy Gilyard caught five passes for 71 yards, including going to the ground to catch an Edwards TD pass. Rookie Chris Polk gained 61 yards on 14 carries and scored a TD.

"I know on my end, I did everything in my power to put my resume down," said Gilyard, a fourth-round pick of the Rams in 2010 who was out of the league last year. "Whether they hire me or fire me, I did everything in my power to make sure I made that decision as hard as I could."

Polk said he "loved being here, loved playing." He kept the ball after scoring the touchdown, his first. He finished the preseason with 112 yards on 27 carries.

Kafka was asked if he has noticed the Edwards bandwagon effect.

"Yeah, Trent played great today," Kafka said. "He absolutely did."


The Eagles finished the preseason 4-0, the first time they've done that under Andy Reid (last 4-0 preseason was 1995). Check back Saturday for parade-route details . . . Mat McBriar, the punter whose agent tweeted he will be released, was not in uniform . . . Chas Henry, who won the job, said he felt all through the preseason he was the underdog . . . Safety O.J. Atogwe made a great play in coverage but promptly reinjured his balky hamstring, which could affect Atogwe's chances of making the roster. "The criteria that they'll use to evaluate players is different than what I may speculate," said Atogwe. "I know I'm able to play this game at the highest level possible. I've proven that time and time again. I believe, by God's grace, that I can still do that" . . . The Jets scored their first TD of the preseason, 8 minutes and 55 seconds into the game . . . Damaris Johnson led Eagles preseason receivers with 12 catches for 195 yards and a touchdown . . . The Eagles managed 20 preseason sacks. Their opponents notched three.

Contact Les Bowen at bowenl@phillynews.com. Follow him on Twitter @LesBowen. For more Eagles coverage and opinion, read the Daily News' blog at eagletarian.com.

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