|Junior||6’1″ 200||Point Guard||Purdue||21 Yrs. Old|
|24.3 ppg||3.6 rpg||2.9 apg||FG: 39.4%||3 PT: 35.5%|
Strengths: Shot creation, Ball handling, Outside shooting, Range
Weaknesses: Distributing to teammates, Size, Shot selection
Edwards became a household name to the casual sports fan from his performance at this years NCAA tournament, but he had a solid junior year before his monster senior season. As a junior he averaged 18.5 points per game while shooting 40.5% on 6.5 attempts, then averaging 24.3 points shooting 35.5% on 10.6 three point attempts per contest. His ability to shoot mid range jump shots and three pointers in multiple ways is something that makes him dangerous scorer from anywhere inside of half court. Whether it is pulling up off of the dribble, coming off of a screen, or using a jab step, Edwards can do it all. Not just a shooter, his speed and quickness allow him to get by defenders driving to the basket, and he has a high level of athleticism being able to finish at the rim. This skill set was on full display during the NCAA tournament with two games of 42 points, to go with 29 and 26 in the other two games. Simply put, if his shot is going down he has the ability to score at any level, which should allow him to be able to put up numbers from the start of his professional career.
Standing at just 6’1″ could be an issue, but smaller players who can figure out how to get their shot off have a place in the league, and his athleticism to go with his 6’5″ wingspan will help him play bigger. After never averaging over 3 assists per game in his three seasons at Purdue, Edwards will need to be more of a distributor as a pro than he has previously been. This should not be a problem with the increased talent in the NBA, but it will be a point of emphasis for his new coaching staff. Defensively he has potential, averaging 1.3 steals per game as a senior, but it will need some improvement before he becomes a solid defender at the professional level. As with any volume shooter there were times where his shot selection was questionable, but when those shots are falling it is something that can be overlooked. However, when those shots are not going down, it leads to games like his 4-24 performance against Indiana, and his game against Minnesota where he went 7-31 from the field. Despite the down games, his efficiency was not terrible given his high usage, and if he can figure out a way to be a more efficient scorer, he has a lot of potential as scorer at the next level.
This play shows his athleticism and ability to finish at the rim:
Here are highlights of the impressive performance he had at the NCAA tournament:
Fact: Carsen Edwards put on one of the greatest shows in NCAA Tournament history. pic.twitter.com/2WusY5bDR4— CBS Sports (@CBSSports) March 31, 2019
There is no consensus where Edwards will fall in the draft, with some projecting him to be a second round pick, however we view him as a first round talent. If a team feels they have a need after the lottery for a point guard, it would not be a surprise to see Edwards go in the mid to late first round. Many analysts are questioning his ability to score at the next level vs. college, however his game and skill set are what the NBA looks for in a scoring lead guard. His ceiling as a professional would be a starter level point guard, possibly reaching an all star level, who puts up high level offensive numbers. The worst case scenario for Edwards is that he is unable to score at the level he produced in college, and his inefficiency leads to him being a back up who can come in the game and score points.