The Buffalo Bills are beefing up their depth at offensive line by signing a former Super Bowl champion with a connection to line coach Aaron Kromer.
The Bills announced on March 23 that they signed former Los Angeles Rams guard David Edwards to a one-year deal. Edwards appeared in 54 games since 2019, starting in 46 including a start in the Super Bowl in 2021.
Edwards is seen as a versatile addition, having played on both the right and left sides of the line with Los Angeles.
Bills Add Familiar Face
As Chris Brown of BuffaloBills.com noted on Twitter, the former fifth-round pick was a four-year starter with the Rams and played his first two seasons under Kromer. Edwards is expected to compete for a starting position in training camp.
“Setting up for a David Edwards vs. Ike Boettger vs. Greg Mancz competition this summer with the top two making the team at IOL. Edwards/Boettger the favorites right now,” tweeted Joe Buscaglia of The Athletic. “Versatility of [Connor] McGovern and [Ryan] Bates to play center enhances flexibility for what they do with their IOL depth.”
A former quarterback in high school, Edwards shifted to offensive line at the University of Wisconsin, gaining 35 pounds to play at 310 pounds.
“He’s worked at it,” Badgers Paul Chryst told ESPN at the time. “He’s got athleticism. You add size to that athleticism, and he’s obviously a smart football player. With his work ethic, you’ve got a chance to make something special happen.”
Edwards’ work ethic and willingness to learn a new position also earned some praise from teammates.
“The jump he’s made has just been crazy,” former college teammate Michael Deiter, who recently signed with the Houston Texans, told ESPN. “He’s got all the attributes. He’s strong. He’s quick. He’s long. He’s got great technique, everything that it takes.”
Edwards is coming off an injury plagued season with the Rams, when he was limited to just six games.
Bills Addressing Issues at Offensive Line
Edwards’ signing comes just a week after the Bills landed McGovern, the 6-foot-5, 308-pound lineman who spent the first four years of his career with the Dallas Cowboys.
Dan Fetes, sports director at WHAM-13, saw McGovern as an upgrade over last year’s free-agency addition, Rodger Saffold, who struggled at times throughout the regular season and playoffs.
“With the Bills signing Connor McGovern, I feel pretty comfortable saying Rodger Saffold will NOT be back in Buffalo next season,” Fetes tweeted.
Like Edwards, McGovern is an offensive line convert who saw playing time at other positions with the Cowboys. He sometimes lined up in the backfield as an H-back, blocking on running plays and running routes as a tight-end/fullback hybrid.
“I’ve played multiple positions, you look back even two years ago I was playing wide receiver, tight end, fullback,” McGovern said. “And overall, that helped my football IQ. So then last year, going to left guard, just helping solidify the offensive line and hopefully come here bring those aspects of Dallas out here and hopefully solidify this group and take the next step.”
The upgrades at offensive line have gotten the approval of quarterback Josh Allen. McGovern said Allen reached out to him directly after he signed.
“He (Allen) reached out to me the other day just to tell me how excited he was for me to be here and all that,” McGovern said. “I’m excited for how mobile he is, how he moves around in the pocket, his arm, his incredible strength. I’m excited to block for him.”