Braylon Edwards has been released by the 49ers as they get ready to play St. Louis in the season finale, according to Braylon Edwards himself. Edwards has been slowed by a knee injury recently and has battled injuries all season, catching only 15 passes in 2011.
Will there be any interest in the short-term? Probably not. The only teams that would want to rent a player right now for one game would be those looking to play more games than that. San Francisco wasn’t exactly loaded at the receiver position, so this is telling. Edwards is now four years removed from his career year in 2007 with Cleveland, when he had over 1,200 yards and 16 touchdowns and looked like a star on the rise. Since then, he has been cast aside by three organizations.
Does history provide any hope for Edwards? I looked for all receivers since 1978 who had a lone 1,000 yard season at age 23 to 25, then did not have any more 1,000 yard receiving seasons through age 28, but were still active in the NFL at that age. There were actually more names on the list than I thought there would be, and it brings back flashbacks to many players of my youth.
The average remaining receiving yards – for the rest of the career, not just one season – was 1,136. The top three names on the list–Terry Glenn, Wesley Walker, and Mark Carrier–were the only ones to have a 1,000 yard season after age 28, and Glenn was the only one to do it twice. Edwards could come back from his decline and these injuries, but history says probably not. The last two years of Roy Williams more fits the median result from our early peakers with a 1,000 yard season, who then never duplicated it again by age 28. Given Edwards’ propensity for conflict as well, I’m guessing very few teams will decide he is worth the risk.
[photo via Getty]