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Donovan Edwards — The Nation's Most Confident Running Back

He might not even technically be a starter on his own team, but Donovan Edwards is as good as any back in the country, and he knows it.
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Blake Corum was running towards a Heisman Trophy last year before injuring his knee and missing the final three-plus games of the season. In his absence, then-sophomore running back Donovan Edwards stepped up in a major way. "Dono", against Ohio State in Columbus, against Purdue in the Big Ten title game and against TCU in the first round of the College Football Playoff, carried the ball 70 times for 520 yards and three touchdowns. Because of that three-game stretch, he's as confident as can be heading into the 2023 season.

“My patience is impeccable,” Edwards during an interview with Pro Football Focus's Max Chadwick. “I have the ability to hit the smallest of holes and break through them. It’s second to none. I’m the best dual-threat running back. I’ll catch a ball 50 yards down the field, over the shoulder. I’d be the best slot receiver in the country if I was really mastering that craft, which I am this year. You can’t put a linebacker or safety on me. Shoot, you might have to double-team me or put your best corner on me. You can’t look at my game and go, ‘Oh, that’s weak.’”

Even the most hardcore Michigan hater would read that and say, "Dammit, he's right." Edwards is an elite talent when it comes to what he's able to do all over the field on offense and he'll get a chance to show it this year as the Wolverines give touches to him and Corum and a plethora of other talented offensive players. Edwards sets himself apart because as he said, he's an absolute weapon as a pass catcher. He showed that during his true freshman season against Maryland on the road catching 10 balls for 170 yards and a score. 

"This is the perfect time for myself specifically, because the NFL wants running backs who can catch," Edwards explained. "If the NFL wants to guard a running back, good luck with that. I don’t care who you are. Good luck guarding me. I see all the stuff right now with how the running backs aren’t getting paid. I believe that I’ll get paid for how I play the game."

Confidence in sports is key, and Edwards has an abundance of it. He sees himself as not only the best back on his team, even though he absolutely loves and respects his brother, Blake Corum, he sees himself as the top back in the country and the eventual No. 1 overall pick. That might rub some people the wrong way, but it's great for Michigan fans.

“I will go down as one of the greatest running backs to ever play the game,” Edwards confidently stated. “I’ll be up there with Walter Payton and Barry Sanders. I believe I will revolutionize the game and the position at running back, for how I run my routes, for how I play as a running back and how I can play at receiver, too."

You might not agree with Edwards on that last part, but the kid is elite. He knows it. Blake Corum knows it. JJ McCarthy knows it. Jim Harbaugh knows it. And everyone in Columbus freakin knows it. He and Corum have a chance to be the most lethal running back duo in the country and Edwards, both as a runner and a pass catcher, is just as much a part of the equation as the one-time Heisman favorite. Scary stuff in the backfield in Ann Arbor.