FOXBORO MA - JANUARY 16: Braylon Edwards #17 of the New York Jets scores a second quarter touchdown as Devin McCourty #32 and Brandon Meriweather #31 of the New England Patriots attempt to tackle during their 2011 AFC divisional playoff game at Gillette Stadium on January 16 2011 in Foxboro Massachusetts. (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)
When we traded for Braylon Edwards last season, I was excited but I was nervous. He was a guy who came with certain issues, a sly punch to Queen James' (yes I'm still a bitter Knicks fan) friend, some issues with Cleveland fans, and a tendency to drop passes at key moments.
Quickly I came to deeply respect Braylon and soon he was one of my favourite Jets on the team. The DWI arrest and some unsavoury comments post Colts defeat had me reconsidering, but overall I could not be happier that Braylon Edwards is a Jet. Anyone that follows me on twitter will know I've said many times I hope he retires a Jet.
So I was happy to see this article by Manish today regarding Braylon's personal development into not only a much better player, but also a much better teammate:
Edwards, 27, has also sharpened his practice habits in the past couple months, offensive coordinator Brian Schottenheimer said. He's even volunteered to take some scout-team reps to better prepare the first-team defense.
"He's gone from a guy that used to work and get through practice to a guy that's now pushing himself to different levels," Schottenhemer said. "That's what's paying off for him in games."
Edwards has been a team player all year. He'll be happy with 3 catches for 30 yards, he'll block his butt off on the outside to spring any of our backs. If he's not getting the ball, he'll get down the field and block for the people who are. He'll hustle until he gets his result. Seeing him carry two Patriots into the endzone for an important TD last week, well it was summed up perfectly in this article
Edwards' 15-yard touchdown reception in the Jets' 28-21 divisional playoff win over the Patriots last week was part talent, part toughness and all heart. With the Jets on the doorstep of their first Super Bowl trip in 42 years, the mercurial Edwards has finally found happiness.
"I just feel like I'm at home now," he said.
A Michigan man trying to make it in Cleveland, Ohio, was always going to be tough, but a man like Edwards was born to play in the bright lights of New York. His contract is out after this year, but I'm sure I'm not the only Jets fan who wants to see Edwards a Jet for a long time.
He's taken to the Jets and the Jets have taken to him. Sometimes two different components just fit. He's found his game, he's found happiness, and he sure as hell looks like he is enjoying it.