Falcons FS Thomas DeCoud said this week that the release of DE Ray Edwards was “a wakeup call.”
DeCoud, whose job is very secure, and other players that have commented publicly on the matter were not particularly critical of management’s decision to part ways with the underperforming veteran, though.
Edwards' departure was not expected, but it was not met with complete and utter shock within the locker room, we’re told.
Edwards had made four consecutive starts — an ample opportunity to show the coaching staff what he was capable of this season — before coaches decided to pull him from the starting lineup during the bye week. In the three games following the Falcons’ Week Seven bye, Edwards had played only 22 percent of the defensive snaps. He was brought in to be a productive pass rusher before the 2011 season, but did not have a sack this season and was not excelling vs. the run. From the get-go, Edwards did not fit well with the Falcons and some within the organization likely had felt that way long before the decision to release Edwards was made.