(on Lavar Edwards)
Lavar Edwards is from Eunice, Louisiana which is right outside Lafayette. Lavar is great size, 6’4”. His weight is somewhere around 270. Actually at the combine he was at 277 and he brought it back down to 268 at his pro day. He’s a very athletic guy. He’s got a combination of strength and athletic ability. We can do a variety of things with him. When you looked at him at LSU, you may have seen some of the numbers were a little bit down. In my opinion, I thought we kind of benefited from having Barkevious Mingo over there and then Sam Montgomery. We were able to benefit because these guys are the guy. They are going out there and getting all the production. They are going high in the draft. Well this is the third guy so it’s almost like, you would assume because the numbers don’t compare to those guys, we got a lesser player. That’s absolutely false. We got a guy here that if he were playing for another team, maybe with a little less talent at defensive end, this guy would play a lot more. His numbers would be up. This guy would have gone much higher in this draft. We are absolutely thrilled to get a guy with this kind of skill set where we got him. Again, with his athletic ability to rush the passer and also size and strength to contribute on run downs. We are absolutely thrilled to get Lavar Edwards.
(on if he is good with his hands)
Yeah, the guy has 35 ½ inch arms. So the length is really impressive when you look at this. From a scout standpoint, he’s kind of a dream. You get a 6’4” guy and the 277 and 35 ½ inch arms that worked out the way he did at the combine. Physically, he’s gifted.
(on his success of production per snap)
When he was on the field, he was definitely contributing.
DEFENSIVE LINE COACH TRACY ROCKER
(on how he fits in on the defense)
The thing I like, like Jon mentioned, he was the third guy. But at times I think he would have been a starter with injuries or whatever. I think what he fits for us is that seeing him as a base end on playing first and second down and if needed he can also help us inside. The thing is he is a straight line, solid. I think he is a straight line, fast guy. I think you saw that he can hold the point of attack. He’s a guy I watched while at the Senior Bowl a lot and just paid attention. You can see some of the tools that we can build on. We always want more. We always want more. But sometimes we are going to demand more out of him and I think he will give us what we want here.
(on having more of a rotation on the defensive line this year)
You’d like to create more of a rotation. I think at some point in time, we also know that we have to give them a break. We need football players. This is a football game. I feel like this guy is a football player and that he can do many things for us. As we go along, we can go into saying we can go to a specialty guy of that nature. This guy I feel like can play football hopefully on all downs. If something should happen, he could come in and be a good substitute and things of that nature. I see him as a football player and plays with effort.
(on if his ability to play on both sides of the line is a unique skill for guys coming into the NFL)
A lot of times you don’t. Again, he’s a guy that plays left and right. Also, he played inside at the three technique. So he played all the positions there. Like we said earlier, we don’t see all the numbers and we don’t see all the production because we watched all the rounds. This guy was a big contributor for them, which was a good college football team.
HEAD COACH MIKE MUNCHAK
(on if he fits the mold of being a sturdier type defensive end)
We feel he will be at a 280 range, in that area. He’s a good athlete. He runs well, chases well. He attacks the line of scrimmage well with his hands. Jon mentioned the length of his arms. That makes the difference in getting his hands in and tackling the tight ends. You see that a lot on tape when you watch him play with a lot of energy. That energy is what we are looking for. He’s not sitting in read waiting for something to happen. We feel he will push the tight end back. He will be the tackle, an all-day sucker for the tackle. He’s just a good worker and someone that we have talked about yesterday and this morning and one of the guys that would fit at that spot that could play that defensive end spot for us on the tight end side. We are happy that he was there and he’s obviously very excited and we look forward to having him in.
(on if Lavar Edwards was graded a fifth round pick)I think he was pretty much in the area we took him. I think when you get to the fourth or fifth round, you start looking at some needs that creep in there of guys you want to have. He was a guy that we were hoping to be there, we could wait to the fifth to get him and we did. That part worked out well for us as far as that goes and how the board ended shaping up. It fits a need that we have here.