With the 2023 NFL free agency period looming, teams are preparing their financials for an overhaul of talent. For one former Wisconsin linebacker, TJ Edwards, his success has gone under the radar as the off-season begins. The former Wisconsin Badger is shaping up to make a massive contract this off-season after making his presence felt last year in the middle of the field.
Former Wisconsin Linebacker TJ Edwards Will Get Paid
TJ Edwards recorded nearly 400 tackles, eight sacks, and 10 interceptions during his four years as a Wisconsin Badger. The four year starter has turned his collegiate success into pro success now, after starting the last three years for the Philadelphia Eagles. Edwards has recorded 389 total tackles in 61 games so far, along with two interceptions and 20 tackles for loss. The former Badger ranked sixth in the NFL last year in total tackles along with leading the Eagles in tackles as well.
Edwards is constantly flying across the field and as a sure tackler his value in the run game is tremendous. Despite low sack numbers with five in his career, Edwards is a cog up the middle and prevents players from getting past him. His play may not result in turnovers or yards lost, but instead he provides reliability and consistency from a blitzing linebacker.
2023 NFL Free Agency: TJ Edwards Edition
ESPN insider Matt Bowen currently ranks Edwards as the 37th best free agent in the 2023 class. Bowen projects Edwards top landing spot will be the Atlanta Falcons because of their immediate need in the middle of the defense. Atlanta ranked 25th last year in total yards allowed per play with 5.7 in the Falcons first year without longtime starter Deion Jones. Foyesade Oluokun also departed the team after the 2021 season where Jones and Oluokun combined for 329 total tackles.
The Falcons have been in serious need of another defensive weapon to help them win games. TJ Edwards could be the perfect fit for their tackle-needy team, which is why the Steelers and Giants have also been labeled as landing spots. Both teams could prove to be interesting options for the former Wisconsin linebacker.
The Pittsburgh Steelers arguably have the most well-rounded team out of anyone in search of TJ Edwards. The Steelers were considering adding a veteran presence to their team like Lavonte David to eat up tackles. However, the Steelers may try to make a run at a younger linebacker who can sign a multi-year deal with the team, which is where Edwards comes in. Pittsburgh declined the fifth year option of Devin Bush and now must find a replacement in the middle of their defense.
Dalton Schultz and TJ Edwards were predicted as free agent signings for the Giants by @rydunleavy.
There’s been some chatter on TJ Edwards jumping from the Eagles to the Giants lately. https://t.co/4VO6cPbzTq
— Doug Rush (@TheDougRush) March 12, 2023
Both of the New York Giants leading tacklers in 2022 are currently unrestricted free agents. Julian Love and Jaylon Smith are both entering free agency and look to play elsewhere in 2023. The Giants are in need of defensive talent to go alongside their stud Kayvon Thibodeaux in the upcoming season. TJ Edwards could be a fantastic option for a defense that allowed 5.2 yards per rush attempt a season ago. The Giants also allowed 374.1 yards per game and adding a sure tackler could help limiting yards after contact.
Follow us @WiSportsHeroics for more great content and @JarrettGuerrera on Twitter. To read more of our articles and keep up to date on the latest in Wisconsin sports, click here! Check out 97.3 The Game on iHeart Radio!